Shalom Life | April 27, 2015

Freedom of Speech and Hate Speech in Canada: A Delicate Balance

January 10th Town Hall Debate to Tackle the Controversial Topic

By: Leonard Carl

Published: January 5th, 2012 in News » World

Freedom of Speech and Hate Speech in Canada: A Delicate Balance

Where do we draw the line between speech that is offensive and speech that is discriminatory?

Questions such as these will form the subject of an upcoming Town Hall debate between Nathalie Des Rosiers and Richard Warman regarding Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act, the controversial hate speech provision.

The Town Hall, hosted by the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, the advocacy arm of UJA Federation of Greater Toronto and other Canadian Federations,will take place on January 10, 2012 from 7:00-8:30pm at the George Ignatieff Theatre in Toronto.

Section 13 states that it is a discriminatory practice to communicate messages using telephone or Internet that may expose others “to hatred or contempt” because of their race, religion, ethnic group or other similar category. In 2008, constitutional expert Richard Moon reviewed Section 13 at the request of the Canadian Human Rights Commission and recommended its repeal. Now, Section 13 has once again come into the spotlight. A private member’s bill calling for the repeal of Section 13 has been introduced in the House of Commons, with a vote expected in the spring of 2012. The Federal Court, as well, is currently assessing the constitutionality of Section 13.

At January’s Town Hall, Nathalie Des Rosiers will argue in favour of the repeal of Section 13. Ms. Des Rosiers is the General Counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and was named one of Canada’s 25 most influential lawyers in 2011 by the Canadian Lawyers Magazine. Previously, she served as Dean of the Faculty of Law – Civil Law Section of the University of Ottawa, and as President of the Law Commission of Canada.

Arguing against the repeal of Section 13 will be Richard Warman, one of Canada’s foremost human rights lawyers. Mr. Warman has worked at numerous federal government departments, including the Federal Court of Canada, the Canadian Human Rights Commission, and the Department of Justice. Since 2001, he has been the successful complainant in fifteen consecutive Internet hate cases involving Section 13.

Debate will be lively at this timely Town Hall dealing with the timeless issue of the right to and limits of free speech. Community members are encouraged to attend, question the experts, and help to shape policy on this important issue.

For more information, call 416.634.3065

Toronto UJA Opens Nepal Emergency Relief Fund Toronto UJA Opens Nepal Emergency Relief Fund TrendingBritish Tory Candidate Says She'll Never Back 'the Jew' British Tory Candidate Says She'll Never Back 'the Jew' TrendingIDF Rescue Mission Departs for Nepal IDF Rescue Mission Departs for Nepal Trending
 

Ever Wonder What Israel's Favorite Soccer Team Is?

April 27, 2015 | By Sy Berg
Ever Wonder What Israel's Favorite Soccer Team Is?

Study reveals that Chelsea, owned by Jewish pro-Israeli billionaire Roman Abramovich, is the most popular English team in the Middle East

Read More

New York Times Slammed for Running Article Titled 'Israeli Police Officers Kill Two Palestinian Men'

April 27, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
New York Times Slammed for Running Article Titled 'Israeli Police Officers Kill Two Palestinian Men'

"What is so hard about [a] straightforward headline accurately depicting the nature and chronology of events?" asks watchdog group CAMERA

Read More

Toronto UJA Opens Nepal Emergency Relief Fund

April 27, 2015 | By Shalom Life Staff
Toronto UJA Opens Nepal Emergency Relief Fund

One hundred percent of funds raised will provide immediate humanitarian aid to disaster victims and their families

Read More

British Tory Candidate Says She'll Never Back 'the Jew'

April 27, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
British Tory Candidate Says She'll Never Back 'the Jew'

Conservative candidate Gulzabeen Afsar is being asked to apologize after singling out Labor leader Ed MIliband on Facebook

Read More

This Teenage Boy Tried to Pick Up Nicki Minaj At His Bar Mitzvah

April 27, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
This Teenage Boy Tried to Pick Up Nicki Minaj At His Bar Mitzvah

Minaj performed at a Bar Mitzvah ceremony in New York this weekend

Read More

IDF Rescue Mission Departs for Nepal

April 27, 2015 | By Itamar Eichner
IDF Rescue Mission Departs for Nepal

Military sends mission to assist in aftermath of earthquake after damaged runways in Kathmandu delayed its departure

Read More

The Israeli Crowdfunding Initiative to Land a Torah on the Moon

April 27, 2015 | By Shalom Life Staff
The Israeli Crowdfunding Initiative to Land a Torah on the Moon

'Torah on the Moon' is a values-driven space mission to celebrate the Torah's contributions to society

Read More

Yes, There's A Grateful Dead Album Entirely in Hebrew

April 24, 2015 | By Caitlin Marceau
Yes, There's A Grateful Dead Album Entirely in Hebrew

Released by Sagol 59 and Ami Yaris, "The Promised Land" features songs from the revered jam band beautifully translated into Hebrew

Read More

More Headlines