The Power of Perspectives

The Canadian Bar Association

Kim Covert

CBA influence

30 is the new over-the-hill: Time to update language law

By Kim Covert January 9, 2018 9 January 2018


Canada’s Official Languages Act turns 30 next year, and is beginning to show its age.

CBA President Kerry Simmons wrote to the Ministers of Treasury, Canadian Heritage and Justice, the three portfolios that play the biggest role in the implementation of the Act, calling on them to bring the legislation – initially adopted in 1969 and consolidated in 1988 – into the 21st century.

While the reality of official languages in the country is continually changing, the Act is frozen in time, she said.

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CBA influence

CBA submission: Lawyers, not immigration consultants, should represent newcomers

By Kim Covert January 3, 2018 3 January 2018


The CBA’s Immigration Law Section has said it quite a few times over the past several years, and said it again in a December letter to the Immigration Minister: lawyers are best placed to offer professional representation for newcomers to Canada.

The Section’s latest letter is a response to the government’s response to the Citizenship and Immigration Committee Report Starting Again: Improving Government Oversight of Immigration Consultants.

The Section applauds the government’s commitment to addressing the need to protect the public from unprofessional or unethical immigration consultants.

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CBA influence

How tricky is consent? Let us count the ways

By Kim Covert January 2, 2018 2 January 2018


Consent is a weighted word these days, and people in many sectors are trying to decide when it’s necessary, how it must be given and how it can be recognized.

Sometimes the question of whether consent was granted can be explained using the simple metaphor of a cup of tea: does the other person want tea? Yes or no?

When it comes to the gathering and sharing of personal information for business purposes, however, the question of consent becomes a lot more complex.

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CBA influence

Competition Bureau initiates discussion on Big Data

By Kim Covert December 18, 2017 18 December 2017


Google. Facebook. Twitter. The Internet itself. Twenty years ago most of these things were barely more than glints in their creators’ eyes (the internet was still the information superhighway 20 years ago), now they’re ubiquitous resources that most people can’t live without.

And while access to basic services is nominally free, they all come with a price – users are both clients and product. For every online action someone, somewhere, has made a record, and more often than not sold at least part of that information on as part of a comprehensive business model. Bring together information of high volume, velocity and variety, use technology and analysis to transform its value, and you’ve got Big Data.

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CBA influence

Flagpoling pilot project unlawful, says Immigration Section

By Kim Covert December 14, 2017 14 December 2017


A controversial Immigration Department pilot program that the CBA has argued should be stopped is instead being expanded, much to the dismay of the Immigration Law Section.

The Section wrote to Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada in July stating that its members had heard troubling accounts from foreign nationals trying to use the pilot project to renew or confirm status and seek re-entry into Canada. The Section offered up a more collaborative approach to addressing excessive wait times at ports of entry.

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