Our Work Centres Around Our Five Core Beliefs
Equality – which includes equity, diversity, and inclusion – recognizes that every person is equal in value and worth, and each is deserving of fairness, dignity and rights.
Fundamental Freedoms allow individuals and groups to express themselves, to believe and practice what they choose, and to exercise their right to vote.
We work to ensure that constitutional rights are respected at every step of the criminal justice system, and that the extraordinary powers conferred to police and criminal courts are used proportionately, fairly, humanely, and only when absolutely necessary.
We bring a principled and rights-focused approach to assessing the impact of new technologies and surveillance, in areas ranging from policing methods to people’s public and private lives.
CCLA & CCLET provide free workshops, seminars, and in-class sessions in schools, educational institutions, and faculties of education, educating citizens about their rights and freedoms.
Our Recent Cases and Reports
View our latest work and activity.
Strip Searches in Ontario PrisonsOntario's law gives provincial prisons carte blanche to strip search any prisoner, at any time, for no reason. We believe the law is unconstitutional.
COVID-19Stay updated with all the latest news from CCLA, including our work monitoring the response to COVID-19 to ensure it’s based on science and is not unnecessarily intrusive to our liberties
Bill 21Bill 21 is a law which disproportionately impacts people who are already marginalized. New Quebec laws ban Canadians working as teachers, lawyers, police officers, and more from wearing religious symbols such as crosses, hijabs, turbans and yarmulkes. This not only affects people currently working in the public sector, but also the youth who aspire to those careers.
Fill Up On Free Speech
The Ontario legislature passed a law that forces gas station owners to put up stickers with the government party line on pollution pricing or the carbon tax. The government should not force anyone to share their message. If the station owners choose to not put up the stickers, they can be handed a new fine every day. That’s called “compelled political speech.” That’s unconstitutional.
Racial ProfilingCanadian police detain thousands of racialized persons in suspicionless roadside stops each year. These police powers enable racial profiling and we believe they are unconstitutional.
Protecting Reproductive Rights
A New Brunswick regulation restricts access to abortion unless done in approved hospitals, even though this restriction is not medically necessary or justified. The New Brunswick law has createD a serious issue for New Brunswick women, girls and trans people who need access to abortion, a basic form of health care.
Fighting Strip Searches
In 2001, the Supreme Court of Canada called strip searches “one of the most extreme exercises of police power” and “inherently humiliating and degrading”. So why has Canada’s federal prison system carried out hundreds of thousands of unnecessary strip searches since then? These are not trivial intrusions. Canadians serving sentences are forced to undergo highly invasive searches in low-risk situations, such as leaving a secure area, or even upon release from prison. These searches can inflict severe psychological trauma, particularly for those with a history of being abused. We’re asking the federal government to end these harmful practices.
Fighting Solitary Confinement
Solitary confinement is the practice of confining someone in conditions of extreme isolation. Getting the practice ruled unconstitutional has been a major goal of both CCLA and BCCLA. We went to Canada’s highest court for a showdown with the federal government.
Toronto's Smart City
Waterfront Toronto contracted with Google’s sibling Sidewalk Labs to create a smart city project in downtown Toronto. This project would be a sensor-laden neighbourhood, collecting data on people who live, work, or visit the area. Losing the ability to be a face in the crowd, and so much of our privacy, is what’s at stake. So we launched a legal action to reset the project.