Law Times

April 10, 2017

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Bank fights disclosure of commercial contract SHANNON KARI For Law Times T he Toronto-Dominion Bank is asking the On- tario Court of Appeal to weigh in on whether commercial contracts with public institutions or government min- istries can normally be disclosed through freedom of information requests. The bank served notice on March 31 seeking leave to appeal a decision last month of the Di- visional Court, which upheld an order for an "affinity agreement" with Ryerson University to be made public under the provisions of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. If leave is granted, it will be the first time the sections of the stat- ute that balance the public's right to know about financial agree- ments entered into by government and a company's desire to keep certain information private will be squarely before the Court of Appeal. The Divisional Court ruling, issued on March 17, concluded that the agreement, which permits TD to promote financial services products to the Ryerson commu- nity in exchange for a fee to the university, does not fall under any of the exemptions to disclosure in the provincial statute. "The adjudicator's approach is consistent with the purpose of the Act, namely that information should be available to the public and exemptions should be lim- ited and specific," wrote Justice Katherine Swinton, with justices Alison Harvison Young and Julie Thorburn concurring. The Divisional Court decision is the latest step in a proceeding that began in 2014 when Ryerson received a freedom of informa- tion request for the affinity agree- ment. The university agreed to dis- close it, except for Schedule B. The bank appealed that deci- sion to the Information and Pri- MOTION TO STRIKE Important tool in litigator's arsenal P7 FOCUS ON Alternative Dispute Resolution P8 See Appeal, page 4 PM #40762529 $5.00 • Vol. 28, No.13 April 10, 2017 L AW TIMES C O V E R I N G O N T A R I O ' S L E G A L S C E N E • W W W . L A W T I M E S N E W S . C O M SUNSHINE LIST U of T's law dean highest earner of schools P5 BY ALEX ROBINSON Law Times A Toronto legal clinic is looking to launch a con- stitutional challenge to the Safe Streets Act. Fair Change Community Ser- vices Legal Clinic is working to- ward bringing a challenge of the act, which bans aggressive pan- handling. Lawyers say the act criminaliz- es homeless people and that pro- ceedings concerning Safe Streets Act tickets unnecessarily suck up valuable time and resources in provincial courts, adding to de- lays. "There's been a lot of talk about the courts being overcrowded and not enough judges or facilities and so on, and yet they spend thou- sands and thousands of dollars and hours of court time oppress- ing poor people by tickets under the Safe Streets Act," says Peter Rosenthal, the lawyer who will be representing the clinic on the challenge. The Fair Change clinic works with homeless people who have been issued large numbers of tickets under the act, sometimes amounting to thousands of dol- lars in fines over the years. The provincial government passed the act in 1999 in an attempt to get rid of "squeegee kids," but lawyers say the legislation has unnecessarily punished people suffering with mental health issues. "Many people who are forced to beg in this city and province are people with mental health issues in particular," Rosenthal says. "So it's discrimination on the basis of mental health and other disabilities." Rosenthal was one of the law- yers who worked on an unsuccess- ful constitutional challenge to the Safe Streets Act in R. v. Banks, which was dismissed by the On- tario Court of Appeal in 2007. In that case, Rosenthal repre- sented 13 individuals who had been issued tickets under the Safe Streets Act. The Supreme Court of Canada refused to grant leave to the application after the Court of Appeal dismissed it. But Rosenthal says he is con- fident a new challenge to the act could be successful because of how the legal landscape has shift- ed since the last challenge was in- itiated. See Interpretation, page 4 Peter Rosenthal says he believes a constitutional challenge of the province's Safe Streets Act could be successful due to a shift in the legal landscape. Photo: Robin Kuniski Legal clinic to challenge Safe Streets Act Catherine Beagan Flood says a presumption that commercial agreements between private entities and public institutions or government ministries are subject to disclosure 'comes as a surprise to vendors.' Integrated Legal Marketing Solutions Put Your Digital Marketing Tactics into High Gear Untitled-3 1 2017-04-03 2:52 PM AnyWhere. AnyTime. AnyDevice. ntitled-2 1 2016-11-02 7:37 AM e: Litigation Support Our Document Management Services include: Scanning • Indexing • OCR (Optical Character Recognition) • Electronic Document Capture and More - Call Us, We Can Help! ntitled-1 1 2014-09-26 9:29 AM

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