On second thought


Yesterday, the NDP’s Rosane Dore Lefebrve asked Public Safety Minister Vic Toews if he would put new airport surveillance measures on hold until an assessment could be conducted. Mr. Toews assured the New Democrat that “the privacy rights of law-abiding Canadians are respected at all times,” but otherwise avoided answering the question directly.

A few moments later, Liberal MP Scott Simms asked if Mr. Toews would refer the issue to the privacy commissioner. Mr. Toews repeated his assurance and invited Mr. Simms to contact the privacy commissioner if he was concerned.

If the member wants the privacy commissioner to look at any practices inside the CBSA in this respect, I would invite him to make that request. I do not think CBSA has anything to hide.

Today, Mr. Toews seems to have decided to go ahead and do that himself.

A spokeswoman for Public Safety Minister Vic Toews says he has told the Canada Border Services Agency to halt audio monitoring until a study of the privacy implications is complete. Julie Carmichael says Toews wants a privacy impact assessment from the border agency and recommendations from the federal privacy commissioner … Carmichael says it is important for agencies to have the right tools to catch smugglers and criminals. But she adds it is equally important that these tools do not unduly infringe on individuals’ privacy.


On second thought

  1. I thought Toews had a keen sense of privacy.

    • Not to mention adultery.

  2. This can only mean the Cons are hearing noise from their own base regarding the intrusion on privacy. They virtually never listen to anyone else..

  3. Phooey. Only the child pornographers and their socialist big union
    boss friends need fear such a thing. Just keep yer mouth shut and
    you’ll be fine.

  4. Yeah, they will be afraid that everything they say in supposively neutral territory will be fully published for everyone to see and anything they talk about would be taken out of context.

  5. This isn’t the last we’ll hear about this. Just look at how Vic Toews treated Canadians over Bill C-30. When people complained it was too intrusive, al the Cons did was add Americans to the list of people allowed to spy on us. When is Canada going to wake up and realize that Harper and his Cons are a criminal organization.

  6. It’s not the intrusion of privacy aspect that bothers me about these measures. I figure it’s a public place and anybody who assumes they have any level of privacy there is just fooling themselves anyway.

    No, what bothers me is that it’s going to be a lot of money spent for absolutely no result. Does anybody really think they’re going to catch terrorists in the baggage check-in line going, “Hey. Did you remember to pack the bomb?”

    • I bet somebody sold them on this and we are stuck paying for it. Any bets the procurement process passes the smell test?

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