Mother of cyberbullying victim speaks out to defend privacy
Mother of cyberbullying victim speaks out to defend privacy as tens of thousands call for online spying proposals to be removed from Bill C-13
“I don't want to see our children to be victimized again by losing privacy right” says Carol Todd as growing campaign rallies behind calls to split C-13 to remove online spying proposals - OpenMedia.ca.
Carol Todd, the mother of cyberbullying victim Amanda Todd, has told a key House of Commons committee that a warrant should be required before Canadians’ private information is shared with government authorities.
In powerful testimony before the House of Commons Justice and Human Rights Committee earlier today, Carol Todd said: "I don't want to see our children to be victimized again by losing privacy rights. I am troubled by some of these provisions condoning the sharing of Canadians' privacy information without proper legal process. A warrant should be required before any Canadians' personal information is turned over to anyone, including government authorities.”
Carol Todd also echoed tens of thousands of Canadians in calling on the government to split the bill, so that non-contentious measures aimed at tackling cyberbullying could be dealt with separately. She told MPs: “I have one request: if there is any way that we can separate these controversial provisions from the law... this would allow this bill to be free of controversy and to permit a thoughtful and careful review of the privacy related provisions that have received broad opposition.”
Justice Minister Peter MacKay is pushing legislation, Bill C-13, that would grant legal immunity to telecom companies who hand Canadians’ private information to the government without a warrant. The Privacy Commissioner recently revealed the government had used telecoms to spy on Canadians 1.2 million times in a single 12 month period - or once every 27 seconds.
Mr MacKay had previously claimed that the online spying measures in Bill C-13 were necessary to tackle cyberbullying. However, today he admitted that C-13 was not restricted to tackling cyberbullying but would also give police broad new powers to tackle what he called “other forms of cybercrime”.
OpenMedia.ca Executive Director Steve Anderson said: “Today’s powerful testimony by Carol Todd highlights how so many Canadians are coming together to tell the government to rethink this reckless legislation. Privacy is an issue that touches all of us - nobody wants a government bureaucrat keeping tabs on everything they do online. It’s past time that Peter MacKay and Stephen Harper listen to Canadians and stop using the plight of bullied children as an excuse to allow the government to expand its already out-of-control spying on law-abiding Canadians.”
OpenMedia.ca led the successful StopSpying.ca campaign that forced the government to back down on its plans to introduce a costly, invasive, and warrantless online spying law (Bill C-30). Nearly 150,000 Canadians took part in the campaign. To learn more, see this infographic.
On October 10, 2013 OpenMedia.ca collaborated with over 40 major organizations and over a dozen academic experts to form the Protect Our Privacy Coalition, which is the largest pro-privacy coalition in Canadian history. The Coalition is calling for effective legal measures to protect the privacy of every resident of Canada against intrusion by government entities.