B.C. Supreme Court rules parts of “gag law” unconstitutional

The B.C. Teachers’ Federation today (March 27) announced that the B.C. Supreme Court has declared parts of Bill 42, which is described by critics as an election gag law, as unconstitutional.

In a press release, the union said Justice Frank Cole will release his reasons for judgment early next week.

Also known as the Election Amendment Act, 2008, Bill 42 imposed spending limits on third parties other than candidates, political parties, and constituency associations.

The law took effect on February 13, three months before the May 12 provincial election.

“The government’s gag law was an attack on free speech and democratic rights,” BCTF president Irene Lanzinger stated in the release.

“The BC Supreme Court decision shows the Campbell government was arrogant to think it could silence its critics and hide from its own record,” Lanzinger also said.

The BCTF, together with the B.C. Nurses Union, the Canadian Union of Public Employees’ B.C. division, and the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of B.C., had challenged the constitutionality of Bill 42 before the court.




Mar 28, 2009 at 4:38pm

It is interesting how many Ads on TV do not necessarily inform anyone other than "so and so is bad" and "we are good". There is no debate and it forces others to spend a lot of money if they want their opinion heard as well. $150,000 is a lot of money. I do not have that much and will have to use commentaries such as this to get my message out.