Patriot Act will prevail over B.C. privacy legislation
of medical records
puts privacy of Canadians in danger
Victoria - British Columbia's privacy commissioner says American
authorities will be able to use the Patriot Act to get access to the
private information on Canadians if personal records are outsourced to
Privacy legislation enacted by the Liberal government of Premier
Gordon Campbell will not protect the information on Canadian citizens
from prying American officials if the province outsources the
management of personal medical records to U.S. companies as it is
planning to do.
Commissioner David Loukidelis concludes in his report that the
sweeping powers of the Patriot Act will triumph over any legislation
that is approved in Canada.
The B.C. government passed a law this month aimed at preventing U.S.
authorities from examining information about British Columbians held
by private U.S. companies. It included fines ranging from $2,000 for
individuals to $500,000 for corporations.
Loukidelis's report confirms concerns of B.C. civil liberties groups
and labour unions, led by the B.C. Government and Service Employees'
Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) who fear that outsourced personal medical records
could be viewed by the FBI and other U.S. agencies.
The 151-page report also concludes U.S. courts have the power to
require American companies to produce records held in Canada by
subsidiaries "because they have the legal or practical ability to
obtain the records."
The Patriot Act was enacted following the terrorist attacks of Sept.
11, 2001. Section 215 of the act allows a special court to secretly
issue an order requiring "the production of any tangible things" to
the FBI. NUPGE
Privacy and the USA Patriot Act
BCGEU demands halt to outsourcing of private
U.S. would overwhelm feeble B.C. privacy protections
Quick Facts -
Powers of the U.S. Patriot Act
Part 1 - BCGEU Submission to Privacy Commissioner on U.S. Patriot Act
Part 2 - BCGEU Submission to Privacy Commissioner on U.S. Patriot Act
Web posted by NUPGE:
29 October 2004