A reader pointed out that the federal Emergencies Act for Canada (see the quotation below) invokes the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. I notice it also invokes the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Canadian Bill of Rights. What I take from that is that all three documents are recognized as binding.
As far as I can tell, the Emergencies Act seems to have not (yet) been invoked for COVID-19. It was mentioned as a possibility in the spring of 2020. According to en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergencies_Act:
On April 9, 2020, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent a letter to the provincial and territorial premiers to consult about invoking the Emergencies Act due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. While consultation with the provinces is a required step before the act can be triggered, the Prime Minister’s Office said there was no present plan to invoke it and that doing so remained a last resort. On a conference call between Trudeau and the premiers later that day, the premiers communicated their unanimous opposition to invoking the act.
The following media stories from March 2020 discussed this:
Quoting from the Emergencies Act:
R.S.C., 1985, c. 22 (4th Supp.)
An Act to authorize the taking of special temporary measures to ensure safety and security during national emergencies and to amend other Acts in consequence thereof
[1988, c. 29, assented to 21st July, 1988]
WHEREAS the safety and security of the individual, the protection of the values of the body politic and the preservation of the sovereignty, security and territorial integrity of the state are fundamental obligations of government;
AND WHEREAS the fulfilment of those obligations in Canada may be seriously threatened by a national emergency and, in order to ensure safety and security during such an emergency, the Governor in Council should be authorized, subject to the supervision of Parliament, to take special temporary measures that may not be appropriate in normal times;
AND WHEREAS the Governor in Council, in taking such special temporary measures, would be subject to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Canadian Bill of Rights and must have regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, particularly with respect to those fundamental rights that are not to be limited or abridged even in a national emergency;
NOW THEREFORE, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:
. . .
This Act was passed in the 1980s. I’ve heard of a similar law passed at the same time in the UK so I think these types of laws (provincially also) were planned long-term as a ready excuse to impose some level of dictatorship, with one of the justifications being “disease in human beings, animals or plants.”
However, it occurs to me that maybe top politicians were reluctant to invoke it for COVID-19 because of these three rights documents it acknowledges. In any case, it’s easier for them to not remind people of their rights and other laws being broken. That’s what the media is being used for now.
However, my main point here is to show how these three documents are recognized by Canadian laws as fundamental. We should make the most of these three laws in addition to other relevant provincial, federal and international laws that are intended to protect our rights:
- Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms: laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/const/page-12.html#h-40
- Canadian Bill of Rights: https://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/c-12.3/FullText.html
- International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights: www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CCPR.aspx
Copies of International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and related information:
Note that the federal government did pass, for example, the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act:
COVID-19 Emergency Response Act
S.C. 2020, c. 5
Assented to 2020-03-25
An Act respecting certain measures in response to COVID-19 . . .
Introduction to Canadian Bill of Rights
An Act for the Recognition and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms
The Parliament of Canada, affirming that the Canadian Nation is founded upon principles that acknowledge the supremacy of God, the dignity and worth of the human person and the position of the family in a society of free men and free institutions;
Affirming also that men and institutions remain free only when freedom is founded upon respect for moral and spiritual values and the rule of law;
And being desirous of enshrining these principles and the human rights and fundamental freedoms derived from them, in a Bill of Rights which shall reflect the respect of Parliament for its constitutional authority and which shall ensure the protection of these rights and freedoms in Canada:
. . .
Many will notice how the Canadian Bill of Rights from 1960 is superior to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. I don’t think this is an accident. I think this is the nature of the elite’s “progress” towards its platonic Brave New World. Note the following regulation below. I think it’s important to examine all obnoxious laws in the same way. Some anti-family (or we could use the term genocidal) provisions passed in recent years should not stand up to this kind of scrutiny. People should challenge everything.
. . . In the case of every Bill introduced in or presented to the House of Commons by a Minister of the Crown, the Minister shall, forthwith upon receipt of two copies of the Bill from the Clerk of the House of Commons,
(a) examine the Bill in order to determine whether any of the provisions thereof are inconsistent with the purposes and provisions of the Canadian Bill of Rights,
. . .