National security

Criminalization of Indigenous Communities

Public Safety Canada disclosed that the Government Operations Centre gathers information on Indigenous rallies for the purpose of “maintaining awareness” of such events. However, there is no evidence that these Indigenous activists present a risk to safety and security. Canadians are concerned that the Trudeau government has continued with the Harper-era surveillance of Indigenous communities.

Bill C-23 - Preclearance Act

Photo: David Delagarza | AirlineReporter

Bill C-23 would give new and expanded powers to U.S. preclearance officers. The fear of abuse or misuse of these powers, given the shift in the U.S. political climate, has created considerable discomfort for many in any notion of handing over more significant powers to the Trump administration, especially on Canadian soil.

Attack on Digital Privacy Rights of Canadians

Rather than reversing newly legislated state intrusions into digital privacy rights, the Liberal government agenda has effectively encouraged the expansion of digital surveillance of Canadians both at home and abroad. The civil liberties organizations and privacy watchdogs have repeatedly criticized the unnecessary and wide ranging digital privacy elements of C-51 and its establishment of the Security of Canada Information Sharing Act.

Abousfian Abdelrazik

Abousfian Abdelrazik

UPDATE
16 March 2017 - The federal government has settled the lawsuit initiated by Abousfian Abdelrazik over CSIS documents leaked to the newspaper La Presse in 2011, with the alleged intent to discredit him. These documents were subsequently used by the newspaper in a report which contained “inflammatory and false accusations about extremist activities.”

Asad Ansari

Asad Ansari, a Canadian-Pakistani dual citizen, faced the revocation of his Canadian Citizenship under the provisions of Bill C-24 (Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act). Convicted of terrorism charges under section 83.18(1) of the Criminal Code, and therefore facing revocation of his citizenship, Ansari joined the BCCLA and CARL in their challenge of the constitutionality of the law. The law is now in the process of being amended, under Bill C-6 (currently in front of the Senate). Mr. Ansari has retained his Canadian citizenship, but concerns continue to exist that C-6 does not go far enough in protecting other citizens from revocation of status.

Environmental groups in Canada

The Harper government’s hostility toward environmental groups is well documented. From 2006-2015 the Conservative government defunded and attempted to discredit several leading and respected environmental research and advocacy groups. Environmentalists were portrayed as a threat to Canadian security.

Bill C-51: Anti-Terrorism Act, 2015

CSIS sign

Since the fall of 2014, the Harper government has introduced two significant bills to amend the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act and other national security related legislation, identified as Bill C-51 and Bill C-44.

Canadian Charities and the Canada Revenue Agency

2 February 2016—On January 20 2016, Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue, announced the winding down of the special review that had been set up by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) under the Harper government to audit registered charities’ political activities.

Canadian Citizenship (Bill C-24)

In June 2014, the Harper government amended the Citizenship Act, making citizenship in Canada harder to get and easier to lose. Key provisions of the amending legislation, which has already been approved by Parliament, will be coming into force at a later date. Under the new amendments, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration may revoke the citizenship of Canadians convicted abroad of terrorism, treason, or spying, or who are or may have been part of an organization considered to be at war with Canada.

IRFAN-Canada

In April 2011, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) revoked the charitable registration of IRFAN-Canada. IRFAN-Canada challenged the revocation and its appeal was scheduled to be heard before the Federal Court of Appeal in May 2014. 

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