TORONTO: The Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF) is considering their legal options, including appeal, in their challenge to the federal quarantine hotel policy. The Ontario Superior Court released the decision in the CCF’s challenge to the policy on July 5. The Superior Court largely adopted the reasons from a different challenge by a different group of applicants brought in Federal Court, and found that the policy does not violate travellers’ constitutional rights.
“Our challenge to the federal quarantine hotel policy dealt with the expert advisory report that included recommendations to end the policy. Our individual applicants were uniquely situated travellers who need to or needed to leave Canada for compassionate reasons,” said CCF Litigation Director, Christine Van Geyn. “In our view, the adoption of reasons from a case with different applicants who made different arguments is insufficient, and we are considering our options for appeal.”
The CCF court challenge did result in some success for the applicants in the case, who need to or needed to leave Canada to care for sick loved ones overseas or to attend end of life care or services. On May 27, the Government of Canada introduced the option for residents of Canada returning from compassionate travel to apply for a quarantine hotel exemption.
“This was not the decision we wanted today, but our advocacy did lead to a change in the rules for compassionate travellers. We should not have needed to take the government to court in order for our applicants to receive this common sense exemption, but we are pleased that our work has helped these travellers,” concluded Van Geyn.
The original version of this release can be found here.