Good news, bad news on security agency consultations

First, the good news: CUSJ’s substantial brief to the Consultation was posted late last
week on the government website. There was no size limit on this submission, which is unusual, so it is the most comprehensive brief that we have submitted on this subject. The government received  59,000 responses to the Consultation. (Wow!)

Now, the bad news: It is a Herculean task to find a particular brief or to to search the government website. There is no search functionality, so trying to gather information is a bit like  trying to read Shakespeare’s Hamlet by looking in the dictionary. (All the words are there, but they are not arranged into sentences.)

However, CUSJ’s Security go-to person, Jack Dodds, is cautiously optimistic, noting that the government report “appears to acknowledge that responses to the Consultation support many positions of CUSJ and other social justice groups.” Dodds sees the rejection of security agencies’ demand for “lawful access” to online information as reason for (guarded) celebration.

We hope that the overwhelming amount of briefs submitted in this consultation, although hard to find, will, by their sheer presence and volume, motivate Canada’s Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale to stand up to the security agency bureaucrats.

The June issue of JUSTnews, coming soon, will provide an analysis of the security consultations and their impact on Canadians.

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