The federal government has announced that it will repeal sections of the Income Tax Act that restrict the political activities of charities this fall, while simultaneously defending the restrictions in court.
In 2015, the Liberals campaigned on a promise to modernize rules governing Canada's charitable sector. This followed allegations that previous governments had used the rules to harass environmental and human rights charities it disagreed with. A consultation led by the new government recommended the rules be removed last year.
At the same time, an Ontario court struck down the rules as an unjustifiable infringement on the freedom of expression of charitable organizations. The federal government also said yesterday it will be appealing this ruling due to "significant errors of law."Read more
In furtherance of our desire to maintain TWU as a thriving community of Christian believers that is inclusive of all students wishing to learn from a Christian viewpoint and underlying philosophy, the Community Covenant will no longer be mandatory as of the 2018-19 Academic year with respect to admission of students to, or continuation of students at, the University.
This motion was passed by the board of governors last week and was reported by the Vancouver Sun today.Read more
The BC Humanist Association is encouraging people to share their stories about the importance of secular and evidence based treatments as part of a new consultation for a draft provincial mental health and addictions strategy.
Last year, the Government of BC created the Ministry of Mental Health and Addiction. The Ministry has set out to create a draft strategy to help tackle the challenges faced by people with mental health and addictions issues. It has launched an online consultation to solicit feedback from British Columbians.Read more
The BC Humanist Association is welcoming a decision by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice striking down rules that restrict the political activities of charities as a victory for freedom of expression.
The decision, released Tuesday, means charities no longer need to navigate the artificial and often arbitrary divide between whether activities are deemed charitable or political when pursuing their mission. It frees charity staff up to focus on their effecting positive change in society.Read more
These sentences are a disgrace.
Far from having any deterrent effect, they are more likely to embolden others and not just those within the fundamentalist Mormon tradition.
If there is a chilling effect at all, it will be on those who left this abusive and dysfunctional community and bravely testified against friends and family.
Vancouver Sun columnist Daphne Bramham has covered the polygamist Fundamentalist Mormon sect in Bountiful BC for decades. Her comments are in reaction to news yesterday that Winston Blackmore and James Oler were sentenced to house arrest after being convicted of polygamy. Blackmore received six months for marrying 24 wives while Oler received three months for his five wives.
The record shows both men had wives under the age of 18.
After their house arrest, both men will be on probation for a year.Read more
The BC Humanist Association is celebrating a pair of 7-2 decisions from the Supreme Court of Canada affirming the Ontario and BC law societies' decisions to reject Trinity Western University's proposed law school.
The five-judge majority, writing in a united voice, argues that the law societies have a legitimate interest in ensuring principles of diversity and non-discrimination are fundamental to the integrity of the legal profession. Permitting a law school with a discriminatory admissions policy would be contrary to this end and therefore a decision to approve was unreasonable. "A more diverse bar is a more competent bar."Read more
The Government of Canada is set to make a decision in the next 10 days whether they will fix our broken charity laws. We need to raise our voice so that it’s clear that the government must act now.Read more
A new poll reports than 76% of Canadians (and the same number of British Columbians) do not think religious wedding ceremonies are "more legitimate" than civil wedding ceremonies.
The numbers come a poll released by the Angus Reid Institute today that looked at Canadians' attitudes toward marriage. The Angus Reid Institute is a non-profit independent research firm.Read more
The BC Humanist Association is welcoming legislation introduced by the Government of British Columbia today to regulate the sale and consumption of recreational cannabis but is expressing concerns at how some regulations may rely on pseudoscientific tests which put the civil liberties of British Columbians at risk.
The BC Government introduced the Cannabis Distribution Act, the Cannabis Control and Licensing Act and changes to the Motor Vehicle Act, which together will regulate the sale, supply and possession of legalized cannabis and create rules around drug-affected driving. These bills follow the ongoing debate in Parliament over Bills C-45 and C-46, which legalize and regulate cannabis. Both federal bills are currently at committee hearings in the Senate.Read more
The BC Humanist Association is expressing concerns about comments by the Minister of Justice made following a petition by another Humanist group.
In September 2017, Doug Thomas of Secular Connexion Séculière launched a parliamentary e-petition calling on the government to hold a parliamentary committee to investigate “systemic discrimination against non-believers in Canadian laws and regulations.” The petition received 531 signatures by January 12, 2018 and was presented to the House of Commons on March 1.Read more