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Canada judge rules government's use of Emergencies Act against COVID convoy protests 'unreasonable'

A federal judge ruled that the actions taken by the Canadian protesters didn't meet the threshold to be declared an emergency.

Published: January 23, 2024 1:24pm

A federal judge in Canada ruled Tuesday that the government's use of the Emergencies Act in early 2022 to clear COVID convoy protesters was "unreasonable."

At the start of 2022, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau enacted the Emergencies Act earlier in response to the "Freedom Convoy" protest of Canadian truckers against COVID-19 mandates.

The Canadian government used the act to arrest demonstrators and freeze the bank accounts of those who supported the movement.

A lawsuit was brought forward by the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the Canadian Constitution Foundation, arguing that the usage of the act didn't meet the threshold legally when invoked, according to Canadian Public Broadcasting.

"I have concluded that the decision to issue the Proclamation does not bear the hallmarks of reasonableness – justification, transparency and intelligibility – and was not justified in relation to the relevant factual and legal constraints that were required to be taken into consideration," he said in his decision," Federal Court Justice Richard Mosley wrote in his ruling. 

You can read the ruling here: 

In order for a public emergency to be declared in Canada, there has to be "an emergency that arises from threats to the security of Canada that are so serious as to be a national emergency."

Mosley ruled that the actions taken by the Canadian protesters didn't meet the threshold to be declared an emergency.

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