In a new monthly column called "pro bono", Yukon-based lawyer Emily Hill writes that if proposed Conservative changes to the Criminal Code are passed, attending protests may have serious consequences for activists:
"Many of the people arrested at protests are released as long as they don't have outstanding warrants or court orders. They are not charged with any offence, and they leave police custody without leaving any more information than their name and address. Under the proposed legislation, they could be required to leave more -- fingerprints and photographs.
This change does two things: it lengthens the stay of each person at the police station, and intimidates people who have never been in police custody. In the long-term, this practice may deter would-be participants in large-scale protests."
And there is more. As usual with this government, I'm not totally suprised that they'd try to bring in this kind of legislative change, yet I'm shocked at the same time.
Full column here.
Hill wrote this piece for rabble.ca as part of a new monthly legal series called "pro bono". Here is the disclaimer: Pro Bono provides legal information designed to educate and entertain readers. But legal information is not the same as legal advice -- the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances. While efforts are made to ensure the legal information provided through these columns is useful, we strongly recommend you consult a lawyer for assistance with your particular situation to obtain accurate advice.