[Hpn] ONTARIO: Court challenge of squeegee law nears

Tom Boland wgcp@earthlink.net
Thu, 4 Jan 2001 07:05:41 -0800 (PST)

Graeme, may the Ontario Court declare the "Mean Streets Act" unconstitutional!

Please keep sending HPN Canada updates. Thanks for your work in Toronto. -- Tom

PS: Similar agruments to those below, by ACLU in the case "Benefit vs. City
of Cambridge", convinced the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court to
overturn panhandling and vagrancy laws statewide.

[ sent by Graeme Bacque <graeme.bacque@3web.net >]

Court challenge of squeegee law nears
Peter Rosenthal will argue next week that
Ontario's Safe Streets Act violates the
Charter of Rights, GAY ABBATE reports
Thursday, January 4, 2001

[ excerpt ]

Mr. Rosenthal said the act infringes on three sections of the Charter of
Rights and Freedoms. He will cite Section 7, which states that "everyone
has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not
to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of
fundamental justice."

He said the restriction on soliciting alms contravenes those rights. "The
act makes it very difficult to legally beg. It prevents people in need from
asking others for help and that is a charter violation."

He said he will also argue the act infringes on the Charter's Section 2(b),
which guarantees the fundamental right to freedom of expression, and
Section 15, which states everyone is equal under the law.

"The act discriminates against poor persons within the meaning of the
charter," Mr. Rosenthal said.

[ end of excerpt ]

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