LATEST: Commons to debate C-51 on Monday, final vote could come as early as Tuesday

This just in: It looks like we’re down to the last few days for Bill C-51 in the House of Commons. The House is due to hold a Report Stage debate on the Bill on Monday, a vote to move it to Third Reading on Monday evening, a Third Reading debate on Tuesday, and we’re hearing that the final Commons vote could happen as early as Tuesday evening.

This is, of course, a ridiculously short amount of time for MPs to properly consider all the implications of this Bill, which experts say will shred our Charter rights, undermine our privacy, and transform the Canadian Security Intelligence Service into what The Globe and Mail has called a “Secret Police force”.

If it passes the House of Commons on Tuesday, the Bill will next go to the Senate, where the government could force it through in just a few weeks. Sadly, at every turn of this debate the government has tried to sideline Canadians’ voices, ignore expert advice, and ride roughshod over opposition concerns.

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Topics: Online Spying

CJFE: Sunday is World Press Freedom Day. What's the state of free expression in Canada?

The continued failure to reform our outdated Access to Information Act has led to a backlogged, inefficient system for accessing public information, seriously infringing the public’s collective right to know. Policies prohibiting federal scientists from speaking about their research are preventing Canadians from having detailed, reliable information about our environment. 

Most recently, Bill C-51 poses a serious threat to free expression through its expansion of digital surveillance. This legislation will give Canadian security agencies the unjustifiable ability to spy on individuals who have done nothing wrong, without creating any additional accountability, oversight, or justification that these measures are necessary or effective.

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EFF: Dive in! The Special 404 Report: worldwide censorship you won’t find in USTR’s Special 301

These are the missing stories from the 301 Blacklist, a U.S. report that bullies other countries to push them into adopting more extreme intellectual property laws. Check it out!

Article by EFF

Every year, the United States publishes a report on countries that, in the opinion of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), fail to give “adequate and effective” protection to U.S. holders of intellectual property rights. This Special 301 Report names and shames nations that do not meet a vague and impossibly high standard of IP enforcement, and implies that the U.S. and its trade partners should punish them for failing to enact more draconian copyright, patent, and trademark restrictions. 

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Topics: Copyright

National: More changes to intellectual property? Smells like TPP

The government appears to be making the final changes on intellectual property so it can get green light join the TPP block. 

Article by Justin Ling for National

One small change for Canadian copyright law, one giant leap for ratifying the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement.

As negotiations on the multilateral TPP deal have inched forward in fits and starts, Ottawa appears to be making the final tweaks on its end required before it can join the trading block. In a surprise announcement, the Canadian Government revealed in its April budget that copyright protections for live records would be significantly extended.

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Topics: Copyright

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