(Queen’s Park): Citizens who speak out in the public interest to protect their communities should not be bullied into silence by those with deep pockets, says GPO leader Mike Schreiner.
That’s why the GPO is applauding today’s passage of Bill 52, the Protection of Public Participation Act, which bans SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) suits.
“A healthy democracy protects citizen from being silenced by those with deep pockets,” says Schreiner. “Thank you to GPO supporters who helped push for anti-SLAPP legislation.”
But this victory is bittersweet: the final legislation is flawed. The Liberal government removed retroactive protection against SLAPP suits that was in the original legislation introduced in 2013.
The GPO is calling on the government to take steps to provide protections for those currently facing SLAPP suits.
“Removing retroactive protection is a slap in the face for those individuals facing financial ruin from SLAPP suits,” says Schreiner. “This bill clearly says that SLAPP suits are wrong, and they waste time and resources in our courts. Why not apply that to existing suits designed to bully citizens into silence?”
The GPO is on a mission to bring honesty, integrity and good public policy to Queen’s Park.