#IndigiBot: Access to Information, HRTO & College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario

Canada (Office of the Information Commissioner) v Canada (Prime Minister), 2019 FCA 95   

This involves two appeals from a decision in the federal court relating to an application for judicial review brought by the Information Commission of Canada against the Prime Minister of Canada. A reporter requested records held by the Privy Council Office relating to four senators. The federal court directed PCO to disclose records under the Access to Information Act. The issue, among others, was whether the court applied the correct standard of review in ordering the release of the records. The court of appeal held that the judge applied the appropriate standard, which is/was correctness. In its analysis, the court of appeal agreed that there were “conflicting decisions of this Court as to the appropriate standard of appellate review concerning the applicability of an exemption provision” (para 27). The court of appeal applied a framework established by the Supreme Court of Canada in Agraira v Canada (Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness), 2013 SCC 36, or the Agraira framework. The court of appeal held that while the Agraira framework was applied in an immigration context, there was nothing preventing the court of appeal from applying the framework in a different context.  

Johnson v Ontario Securities Commission, 2019 HRTO 775  

This is an interim decision from an administrative tribunal, the human rights tribunal.  The applicant filed a request to amend the application to include amendments to the narrative and to add details to the further alleged discrimination. She also requested an interim remedy. The respondent, the OSC, indicated it was prepared to consent to the request on the condition that the applicant’s counsel recuse herself and transfer the file to another counsel. The OSC alleged that the counsel would be in breach of Rule 5.2-1 of the LSO’s Rules of Professional Conduct if she were to continue to act as counsel. The request was allowed and held that the issue whether counsel was/is in conflict was/is not a factor. Further, the applicant’s request for interim remedy was denied.  

Ontario (College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario) v Noza, 2019 ONCPSD 19 

This is a decision of the Discipline Committee (the “Committee”) of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. The doctor entered a plea of no contest regarding the allegations against him. The allegations include failing to communicate he was going to conduct a vaginal examination, failing to obtain informed consent before proceeding with the examination, and failing to follow his usual practice, including ascertaining whether the patient wanted a chaperone in the room, among other things. The patient felt confused and upset by the conduct. The doctor had no prior history with the Committee and a joint submission was made by counsel for the doctor and counsel for the college. In determining the appropriateness of the penalty, the Committee emphasized the importance of protecting the public, deterrence and integrity of the profession and where applicable, rehabilitation of the member. The Committee accepted the joint submission.