Publication Bans 1996

1996 Ottawa, ON

Criminal Section Documents - Publication Bans


At the 1994 Conference Saskatchewan presented a resolution which was passed by the Section as follows:
  • "That the Criminal Law Section form a committee to study publication bans and exclusion orders and provide the 1995 meeting with recommendations on changes in the law in this area."
Saskatchewan offered to Chair the Committee which included members from British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Quebec and the federal Department of Justice.

At the 1995 Conference the Publication Bans Committee presented a paper outlining the legal background and framework of publication bans, the constitutional issues arising in this area and a discussion of the recent Dagenais and T.S. decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada. That paper raised some outstanding issues in the post-Dagenais era.

In addition, the Publication Bans Committee sought the approval of the Section to continue its efforts with some variations on the original mandate. Noting that there had been a number of significant developments in the law in this area and that there were cases pending in the Supreme Court of Canada, the Committee requested further time to consider the issues and to also address third party interests.

The Committee sought approval to proceed with respect to three areas and this approval was given. Accordingly, this paper reflects the work done in the approved areas over the last year. As there was no funding available for this project, different parts of the Paper were prepared by individual members. It was not possible to meet to debate each proposal and time constraints prevented even the circulation of a final draft to all members. Accordingly, it should not be thought that each member of the Committee endorses each proposal. The proposals are simply put forth to stimulate discussion and any further action the Section considers appropriate.

The first section of the paper presents the legal background and framework concerning publication bans. Following that is a presentation of the substantive and legal issues addressed by the Committee including general proposals for the reform of some but not all of the present substantive and procedural law. Next, the penalty provisions relating to these offences are examined. Finally, proposals are made for reform of the substantive and procedural law in a separate Part of the Criminal Code. A summary of the proposals is attached to this paper.

Appendix I to the paper outlines the present provisions in the Criminal Code which relate to these issues as well as proposed legislation on these issues. Appendix II provides the actual provisions referred to in Appendix I.

Next Annual Meeting

2020 Annual Meeting

Place to be Announced

August 9 – 13, 2020