Freedom of the Press

The Issue

While freedom of the press is protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, it is in serious jeopardy. The business model that has sustained the media is failing – resulting in a significant loss of professional journalists and a serious decline in the media’s capacity to do the investigative reporting that is critical for public knowledge and government and corporate accountability. The work of the media in Canada is also imperilled by weak access-to-information laws, court publication bans, vexatious defamation claims, and the chilling effects of mass surveillance.

Why It Matters

Democracy depends on an independent, uncensored, diverse, professional media to inform the public, to ask difficult questions, and to foster transparency and accountability in those who wield power.

Our Work

The Centre for Free Expression promotes public discussion of the importance of freedom of the press, challenges facing the institutional media, and the opportunities and limitations of social media as an alternative. It works in collaboration with journalists, media organizations and public interest groups to evaluate models for the sustainability of independent, adequately financed, investigative journalism, to press for better access-to-information legislation, to limit publication bans and to strengthen protections for free expression.

Resources

Past Event

Afghanistan: The War Against Journalists

Panelists: Sadaf Ahmadzai, Shakor Kamran, Makia Monir, Rachel Pulfer, Shogofa Sediqi

Moderator: Julian Sher

Podcast

Silencing Kashmir—The state of press freedom in the world’s most militarized zone

Panelists: Aakash Hassan, Raqib Hameed Naik, Kunal Majumder, Geeta Seshu

Moderator: Julian Sher

Podcast

“How do you know that?” When journalists’ best questions seem too sensitive to ask

Panelists: Vidya Kauri, Shenaz Kermalli, Adrian Ma

Moderator: Janice Neil

Past Event

Silencing Kashmir—The state of press freedom in the world’s most militarized zone

Panelists: Anuradha Bhasin, Aakash Hassan, Kunal Majumder, Geeta Seshu

Moderator: Julian Sher

News

Indigenous Services Canada headlines trifecta of federal departments ‘winning’ at obstructing release of information

OTTAWA, ON, Feb 1, 2022 - Indigenous Services Canada has been selected as the 2021 recipient of the Code of Silence Award for Outstanding Achievement in Government Secrecy in the federal category. 

February 1, 2022