Screen Shot 2015-02-05 at 4.24.03 PM

11 days ago, Stephen Harper launched C-51 – also known as his “secret police” bill: a reckless law that could give sweeping powers to spy agencies and undermine our civil liberties, with minimal oversight or accountability. The backlash has been palpable: so far, more than 30,000 Leadnow members have signed the petition urging MPs to reject the laws – and that number is still climbing.

Now, we need political parties to take notice. It’s up to us to tell the Liberal party that we need them to stand strong against this, so we can isolate Harper and force him to back down from some of the worst parts of this bill. To do that, we need the Liberal Party to hear personal messages from the voters it cares about the most – people who have voted for them in the past, or would consider doing so again in the future. Is that you?

 Please write a quick, personal, message to Justin Trudeau and the Liberal party, urging them to reject fear, and stand against Harper’s “secret police” bill.

Not sure what to say?

  • Introduce yourself at the start of the message. If you are a Liberal voter or might consider voting for the Liberals in the future, include that in your message – decision-makers will take your letter more seriously if know that this coming from someone whose vote could count for them.

  • This won’t protect our freedoms – it will undermine them. The bill would criminalise certain kinds of speech 1 2, extend the RCMP’s powers to arrest citizens who have committed no crime 3, and cast a wide net of surveillance over the people of Canada 4.  All of that, with minimal oversight and accountability. 5 6 These laws won’t protect the people of Canada – it will silence dissent, and undermine our democracy. 7

  • Just how far could this law go? Analysts say the wording of the bill is so vague that it could go far beyond its intentions. 8. In taking measures to reduce a threat, the bill only instructs CSIS can’t kill or harm anyone, or “violate the sexual integrity of an individual.” 9 Is everything else fair game?
  • Last year it was found that the Committee tasked with overseeing CSIS’ work, the Security Intelligence Review Committee, has not only been encountering delays in receiving information — they also suggested that the agency had “seriously mislead” the committee, and “failed to proactively disclose highly relevant information”. 10 Our oversight model isn’t working, and with these laws, it will only get worse.

Notes:

  1. Ham-fisted terrorism bill cries out for repair: DiManno. Toronto Star, February 1, 2015. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2015/02/01/ham-fisted-terrorism-bill-cries-out-for-repair-dimanno.html
  2. Bill C-51 Backgrounder #1: The New Advocating or Promoting Terrorism Offence. K Roach and C Forcese, February 3 2015. Available via http://antiterrorlaw.ca/
  3. Ivison: Harper Terror Legislation has the possibility to disrupt a balance that has served Canadians remarkably well. National Post. 30th January 2015 http://news.nationalpost.com/2015/01/30/john-ivison-harper-terror-legislation-has-posibility-to-disrupt-a-balance-that-has-served-canadians-remarkably-well/
  4. Thomas Mulcair hopes Quebecers remember NDP was against War Measures Act. Toronto Star. 10th February 2015. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2015/02/10/thomas-mulcair-hopes-quebecers-remember-ndp-was-against-war-measures-act.html
  5. Parliament must reject Harper’s secret policeman bill. Globe and Mail, February 1 2015. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/editorials/parliament-must-reject-harpers-secret-policeman-bill/article22729037/
  6. Learn from CIA torture scandal, and let Parliament oversee Canada’s security services: Editorial, The Star, December 10 2014. http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/2014/12/10/learn_from_cia_torture_scandal_and_let_parliament_oversee_canadas_security_services_editorial.html
  7. Harper’s New ‘Anti-Terrorism’ Bill Will Create a Climate of Self-Censorship. Huffington Post, 4th February 2015. http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/peter-nowak/bill-c-51-terrorism_b_6605980.html
  8. Bill C-51 Backgrounder #1: The New Advocating or Promoting Terrorism Offence. K Roach and C Forcese, February 3 2015. Available via http://antiterrorlaw.ca/
  9. Harper’s Police State Law, The Tyee, February 9 2015. http://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2015/02/09/Harper-Police-State-Law/
  10. John Major, Retired Supreme Court Justice, Warns over Knee-Jerk Reaction to Ottawa Attack. Huffington Post 10/29/2014.

Our campaigns are only as effective as our ability to organize.

Please click Yes to confirm that Leadnow can follow up with you about this campaign and others. We will protect your privacy, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Yes

Click here to learn more about why we’re asking you this.