Policy Briefs

The Asper Centre makes numerous oral and written submissions in respect of proposed legislations or policies affecting constitutional rights, including the following:

Improving Access to Abortion Services in Canada 

The Asper Centre’s Reproductive Rights Working Group produced a report to be used as an advocacy tool to improve access to abortion services in Canada. This report covers the critical findings and recommendations of an expert panel convened in 2023 and includes an overview of the current landscape of reproductive rights in Canada.

Read the Brief here. 

Modernizing the Privacy Act

The Asper Centre’s Privacy Law Working Group submitted a Brief on Modernizing the Privacy Act to the House Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics, providing recommendations to help ensure that any future Privacy Act reforms and amendments will be fully compliant with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Read the Brief here.

Solitary Confinement

The Asper Centre’s 2023 summer fellow produced a report for the John Howard Society of Canada analyzing the current state of solitary confinement law in Canada and making recommendations for improvements that will bring it in line with constitutional requirements and the Charter rights of prisoners.

Read the Report here

RCMP & CBSA Oversight

In May 2023, the Asper Centre’s Police Oversight working group submitted a brief to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security making recommendations to improve Bill C-20: Public Complaints and Review Commission by making civilian oversight of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) more effective, fair and transparent.

Our Brief

Facial Recognition Technology and the Charter 

In 2021, the Asper Centre’s Artificial Intelligence and Constitutional Rights working group submitted the following brief to the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy, and Ethics. The brief identifies key Charter implications for the use of facial recognition technology by law enforcement and provides recommendations for legislative reforms that would better protect individuals from improper use of this technology.

Our Brief

RCMP Reform

In May 2021, the Asper Centre’s Indigenous Rights Working Group submitted a brief to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights, the Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs, the Minister of Public Safety, and the Chairperson of the Civilian Review and Complaints Commission of the RCMP, about historical Bill C-3 which would have amended the RCMP Act and the CBSA Act to extend oversight over the CBSA and make changes to police oversight.

Asper Centre Brief

Immigration Detention

In August 2019, Asper Centre students published a Caselaw Compendium on the Legal Requirements for a Fair Immigration Detention Review Hearing.

Case-Law Compendium

Administrative Segregation

In November 2018, the Asper Centre submitted a brief to the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security on Administrative Segregation.

Our Brief

Preclearance Act Amendments

In May 2017, the Asper Centre made a submission to the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security  on the Charter implications of Bill C-23: An Act to Amend the Preclearance Act.

Our Brief

Warrantless Access to Subscriber Information

The Privacy Working group prepared a submission to the DPSC and the DOJ addressing warrantless access to basic subscriber information, and how to reconcile privacy with national security.

Our Brief

Lawful Access

The Asper Centre and Professor Lisa Austin provided written submissions to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner regarding lawful access and the consent model under PIPEDA, dated July 28, 2016.

Our Brief

Citizenship and Immigration

Professor Audrey Macklin appeared before the Standing Committee to make oral submissions on the government’s omnibus immigration Bill, Bill C-31.

Summary of Oral Submissions

Omnibus Crime Bill

The Crime Bill Working Group prepared a submission to the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs addressing the constitutional issues in respect of Bill C-10 the federal government’s crime bill that establishes new minimum sentences, amends the Youth Criminal Justice Act and makes other significant changes to the criminal law in Canada.

Our Brief

International Prisoners Transfer

The Asper Centre provided a submission to the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security on the constitutional implications of Bill C-5: An Act to Amend the International Transfer of Prisoners Act. Our brief focuses on the constitutional issues that we argue are raised by the proposed legislation.

Our Brief

Privacy Rights of Prospective Jurors

The Asper Centre was invited to provide a submission to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario in respect of her investigations into the alleged background checks of prospective jurors in criminal trials in Ontario.

Our Brief

Privacy Commissioner’s Report released October 5, 2009