Thursday, June 26, 2008

Racial and Religious Profiling is a Safety and Security Threat to Canadians

Activist group cries foul on no-fly list anniversary

VANCOUVER -- Civil rights groups are calling on Canadians to share their stories of racial profiling, informer recruitment and other trials of travelling under heightened security rules.

A coalition of groups marked the first anniversary of the so-called no-fly list's introduction in Canada by announcing a study into the impact of the lists in Canada and the U.S.

The groups condemned the watch list Wednesday, saying too many innocent travellers are needlessly caught on the lists.

"The model of militarizing travel, setting up check points at airports and creating secret watch lists is clearly having a disastrous impact on privacy, mobility, equality and security rights of Canadians," Michael Vonn, of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, said at a news conference in Vancouver.

See the full story at CTV

ETA: The Watch Lists and Border Controls research project is doing work to expose way travelers are being screened in Canada:
This research project led by the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group (ICLMG) and its partners, aims to document the nature of the incidents and the number of travellers who believe they have been mistakenly or unfairly targeted by government watch lists on both sides of the border.

The purpose of the research is to investigate and generate better public understanding of the practices, programs and systems used to screen travellers at Canadian airports and at Canada-U.S. border crossings in order to assess the scope and depth of their concrete impacts on civil liberties, privacy rights and mobility rights.

We need to know more in order to inform our work promoting and defending civil liberties and human rights for all.