Peckford domestic travel ban challenge mooted by Associate Chief Justice

Credit: Irnie Racing
Freedom Convoy 2022, Ottawa

Federal Court Associate Chief Justice Jocelyne Gagné granted Thursday the Attorney General’s request for mootness in the combined domestic travel ban challenges of Nabil Ben Naoum, Maxime Bernier, Brian Peckford et al. and Shaun Rickard & Karl Harrison vs. the Attorney General of Canada.

The challenges launched before the intranational travel restrictions were officially suspended on June 20, 2022 sought the removal of restrictions or at the very least their review and that natural immunity be recognised in lieu of vaccination.

The multi-million dollar challenge, which was already delayed at the behest of the Federal government, will now have to be re-started from scratch at the Superior Court if an appeal on the mootness decision is unsuccessful.

At this point it is still unclear why the mootness motion was approved given the suspension of the travel mandate and not its repeal. That information is forthcoming and will be released after the translation of the decision from English into French is complete.

This country was built on travel and here this is what the federal government does as a mandate, prevents somebody who is not vaccinated from travel

Brian Peckford, an original drafter and signatory of the 1982 Constitution Act which includes the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, stated in an April 2022 interview with Canadian lawyer Viva Frei (David Freiheit) that he filed the lawsuit because not only must he “talk the talk” he must also “walk the walk”.

He then added that “the federal mandate for travel was very very significant in the sense that every Canadian either directly or indirectly is affected by that travel mandate. This country was built on travel. This country was built on rivers. This country was built on the railway. The country was built on the St. Lawrence seaway. This country was built on travel and here this is what the federal government does as a mandate, prevents somebody who is not vaccinated from travel”.

“So I thought that right away this lawsuit people could understand right away because everybody is affected. They have family in another province. They have a business in another province. They like to travel as all Canadians have done. Our whole history is one based on travel. … We’re the only country in the world now, the only country on the planet that still has these kinds of travel mandates like we have. I’m tottally shocked. I’m beyond shocked. I don’t know what to say”.

we’re definitely going to the Supreme Court of Canada

Peckford also noted that if they lose at the federal level “we’re definitely going to the Supreme Court of Canada”.

On Friday Peckford wrote in his blog that he will appeal the decision if possible.

Also on Friday, the Justice Center for Constitutional Freedoms who provided council for Peckford via donation campaigns stated that the “travel mandate represents one of the most egregious infringements of Canadians’ mobility rights in Canadian history, and in our view, striking the lawsuit out before it is heard–and while the Prime Minister continues to threaten Canadians with further Covid restrictions–is a grave injustice”.



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