Hundreds of legal experts call on federal government to reconsider proposed prostitution laws

Ottawa, ON [July 7]—More than 200 legal experts from across Canada are urging the federal government to consider the harmful and likely unconstitutional effects of the proposed sex work legislation introduced by Justice Minister MacKay last month.

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Pivot Legal Society fights for Abbotsford's homeless to be heard in court

Vancouver, B.C. [July 3]—Pivot Legal Society will defend a lawsuit seeking to protect the rights of Abbotsford's homeless people. 

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New report from Pivot Legal Society finds unregulated use of police dogs in B.C. causing serious and unnecessary injury

Vancouver, B.C. [June 26] — Police dogs are the number one source of injury caused by police forces in British Columbia, according to a new report from Pivot Legal Society.

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Media Advisory: New Pivot report details injuries from police dog bites

Vancouver, B.C. [June 25]—On Thursday, June 26, Pivot Legal Society will release a report detailing the rise in injuries relating to police service dogs in British Columbia. 

The report compiles more than two years of provincial police data, and focuses on the deployment of police dogs and their impact on public safety.

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Mandatory Minimums Challenge Heard by B.C. Court of Appeal

Pivot Legal Society intervenes at the BC Court of Appeal arguing mandatory minimum sentences unconstitutional for drug crimes

For Immediate Release: 
June 5, 2014

Vancouver - This morning, the BC Court of Appeal began hearing the case of Joseph Lloyd, a Downtown Eastside resident who successfully challenged the federal law on mandatory minimum sentences for drug offences. Mr. Lloyd was convicted of possession for the purpose of trafficking which carries a new 1-year mandatory minimum jail term since March 2012, when the Safe Streets and Communities Act alternately known as Bill C-10 and the “Omnibus Crime Bill” amended section 5 of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA).

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New research shows criminalization of clients endangers Vancouver sex workers and violates their human rights

BMJ Open study finds criminalization and policing of clients in Vancouver
reproduces the same risks for violence, abuse, and poor health for sex workers as previous criminalization model in Canada

Legal analysis of the research concludes criminalization of clients creates an unacceptable risk of harm and violates sex workers’ constitutional right to security of the person

Vancouver, B.C. [June 3, 2014]—Criminalizing clients endangers the health and safety of the most marginalized sex workers in Vancouver, Canada, according to a newly published study in one of the top global health journals, British Medical Journal (BMJ) Open.

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BC Supreme Court grants injunction providing access to heroin assisted treatment

Media Advisory – May 29, 2014

Vancouver – On Thursday, May 29, 2014, Chief Justice Hinkson of the BC Supreme Court granted an injunction to the participants in the SALOME study (The Study to Assess Long-term Opioid Maintenance Effectiveness) providing an exemption from new federal regulations that prohibit doctors from prescribing heroin to patients for whom other treatment options have been ineffective. 

In November 2013, the plaintiffs in the case – Providence Health Care Society, Deborah Bartosch, Charles English, Douglas Lidstrom, Larry Love and David Murray – brought an action against the federal government alleging that new regulations violate Canada’s constitution. Pivot is representing the five individual patients whose health improved while in the SALOME study and who could no longer access the treatment once their time in the study was over. The plaintiffs went to court in March 2014 seeking an injunction exempting them from the amendments while the case makes its way to trial.

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Abbotsford’s Homeless ask court to recognize their right to exist as equal citizens

Media Advisory - March 7, 2014



New Westminster – Today, Friday March 7 at 9:00am, Abbotsford's homeless residents will be back in court, asking that the court consider their right to live in the city and to be treated with dignity. Last fall, homeless people in Abbotsford stood up to exclusion and harassment by setting up a tent city in Jubilee park as a safe haven for people with nowhere else to go. Days before Christmas, the City of Abbotsford won a court injunction to clear out the camp. While the tent city residents have dispersed, the City is now proceeding to trial against the homeless. The City of Abbotsford is asking the court to grant an order making it illegal for the homeless to camp or erect a tent in any park in Abbotsford.



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Illegal evictions in City Hall’s back yard

Vancouver – A Vancouver landlord is trying to illegally evict an entire building of low-income and marginalized renters, potentially putting them out on the street. The Cambie Café building, home to 18 people, is located at the corner of Cambie and 7th Avenue in Vancouver, right in the shadow of Vancouver City Hall.

Residents of the building, along with the Social Housing Alliance and Pivot Legal Society, will be holding a press conference today at 11 AM to speak out against the illegal evictions and demand the City and the province protect their homes.

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A landmark victory – Supreme Court strikes down prostitution laws

A landmark victory – Supreme Court strikes down prostitution laws 

Vancouver- This morning the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) released its verdict in the landmark case of Attorney General of Canada v. Terri Jean Bedford, Amy Lebovitch and Valerie Scott. The court, in a unanimous decision written by the Chief Justice, struck down all of the three criminal code provisions which the applicants argued, together and separately, prohibit sex workers from taking meaningful steps to improve their safety and health. The laws were found to violate s. 7 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

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