Judicial Review Still Possible
TORONTO, July 4, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Canadian Human Rights Commission has dropped a complaint by a homosexual activist against Catholic Insight a Toronto-based national Catholic news magazine. A year and a half – and many thousands of dollars in legal fees – after a nine-point human rights complaint was filed by Edmonton-based homosexual activist Rob Wells, Catholic Insight has been informed that the case has been dropped. However, a judicial review before the Federal Court is still possible should the complainant pursue that avenue.
In a letter the Commission noted that it decided “to dismiss the complaint because the material (produced by Catholic Insight) is not likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt based on sexual orientation.” It added that “the file on this matter has now been closed.”
Wells filed the complaint over the magazine’s allegedly offensive coverage of homosexual activism and the issues it has affected. According to editor Father Alphonse de Valk, however, the magazine has consistently set out the Roman Catholic Church’s position on such questions, making it clear that persons with same-sex attraction must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity and every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided.
“We welcome the Canadian Human Rights Commission’s decision in this matter and were confident from the outset that we would be vindicated,” said Father de Valk. He added that his publication not only has the right, but the responsibility, to report, analyze, comment on, and criticize where necessary, homosexual activism as it pertains to important social issues such as the nature of marriage, adoption rights, the allocation of social benefits, burdens on the health system caused by unhealthy behaviours and so on.
“It is chilling to think that a publication can be hauled before a government tribunal simply for reporting to interested citizens developments in these areas of controversy,” said Father de Valk. “This matter underscores once again the necessity of urgent reform of the Canadian human rights system.” He added that, coupled with a series of actions launched by a Toronto-based homosexual activist, Catholic Insight has been unnecessarily burdened with $20,000 in legal fees to date.
Given the consistently unsuccessful nature of these homosexual activist attacks upon it, Catholic Insight will now examine the prospects of launching countering legal actions against those who have been unnecessarily harassing and financially burdening the publication, said Father de Valk.