Protecting Privacy – Repeal Bill C-51

Bill C-51, the federal government’s controversial "secret police" law, is a sweeping piece of legislation that will undermine our civil liberties and enable government agencies to share your sensitive data with no oversight and no accountability. Despite widespread condemnation of the bill, the federal government pushed through the legislation in June. Canadians should not have to choose between security and their rights. For more information, and to join our coalition, see Privacy Coalition

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Bill C-51, the federal government’s controversial new "secret police" law, is a sweeping piece of legislation that will undermine our civil liberties and enable government agencies to share your sensitive data with no oversight and no accountability. Despite widespread condemnation of the bill, the federal government pushed through the legislation in May 2015. 

“Canadians should not be forced to unnecessarily choose between security and liberty," says Paul Finch, BCGEU treasurer. "Bill C-51 is an attack on unions, union members, other civil society groups, and needs to be stopped.”

Opposition to the bill includes a growing number of prominent Canadians and diverse organizations including former Canadian Prime Ministers Jean Chrétien, Paul Martin, Joe Clark, John Turner, five former Supreme Court justices, former privacy commissioners, Amnesty International, Council of Canadians, Canadian Civil Liberties Association, David Suzuki Foundation, the Official Opposition New Democratic Party, the Green Party, and more than 100 law professors across Canada.

Canadians should not have to choose between security and their rights. Reject these scare tactics. Bill C-51 is reckless, irresponsible, dangerously vague and ineffective. The bill must be repealed.

Photos: BCGEU Treasurer Paul Finch interviewed by CBC News (above) and Global BC News (below) at Vancouver's National Day of Action Against Bill C-51 on March 14, 2015.

Action Centre

Building on the success of the nation-wide actions coordinated by the BCGEU in March 2015, the coalition campaign against C-51 has been relaunched - click Privacy Coalition.
 
"The law attacks our core values of freedom and democracy by legitimizing mass, warrant-less surveillance so vast that no oversight is possible," says Paul Finch, treasurer BCGEU. "We need to remember: both the Liberals and the Conservatives voted to take away Canadians' civil liberties with this law."
 
The labour movement has a long and established history in the fight to defend civil liberties and social justice.  The BCGEU has consistently opposed the Conservatives' "security agenda" having started a coalition of labour unions and civil society groups in early 2015.  The BCGEU led a strong campaign and national day of action with extensive media coverage and now, the BCGEU continues to push to have the law fully repealed.
 
"Historically, Canadian security agencies have targeted labour-friendly political parties and trade unions," Finch continues. "We can't forget the lessons of the MacDonald Commission whose recommendations led to the establishment of CSIS as a separate entity from the RCMP: an entity without the powers of arrest.  Canadians will never accept that we must trade our civil liberties for security. There is no real security without civil liberties."

Join us in spreading the word and encouraging people to join the Privacy Coalition - go to Privacy Coalition and pledge, share your story, and take action.