(Ottawa, Canada – April 22, 2013) A
prominent terror-linked national Muslim civil liberties organization is once again urging Members of Parliament to reject Bill S-7 (the Combating Terrorism Act) this week when the bill comes to a final vote, following the recent Boston bombings.
The Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CAN) says the security legislation, which was re-introduced in Parliament by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government in 2012, would undermine core civil liberties and without safeguards has the potential for discriminatory application.
The controversial legislation was fast tracked into law in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks and was repealed in 2007 after Parliament voted against extending contentious security provisions including preventive arrest and coercive investigative hearings.
“Despite repeated evidence that such extraordinary measures are unwarranted, the federal government has chosen now to move this needless legislation to a final vote in the House of Commons. Bill S-7 threatens basic civil liberties as individuals can be arrested for up to three days, forced to testify in a secret hearing, or made subject to bail conditions – all without charges being laid,” says CAIR-CAN Executive Director Ihsaan Gardee.
“We are deeply concerned by this overreaching legislation which normalizes exceptional powers inconsistent with due process and established Canadian democratic principles. We urge all Members of Parliament, including legislators on the government’s benches, to vote against the bill,” adds Gardee.
CAIR-CAN noted that every major terrorism-related incident in Canada since 2001 has been thwarted without the need for preventive detention or investigative hearings because the Criminal Code is already an effective tool to counter terrorism.
Last November, CAIR-CAN joined several other prominent Canadian civil liberties organizations, including the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group, in opposing the controversial bill. In February, CAIR-CAN’s call on supporters and fellow Canadians to request their MPs vote against the legislation was met with a huge response.
TO SUPPORT THIS BILL, CONTACT:
Canadians, contact your Parliament member, all others email: