Mr. Stephen Garvey, Leader and Founder of the National Advancement Party of Canada addresses the media in regard to the City of Calgary violation of the Canadian Charter.
A transcript of the official response by Stephen Garvey can be found underneath the video below:
City of Calgary Violates Charter
Thank you to everyone for joining us here today.
The City of Calgary has overstepped its authority by using the parks permit system to deny selectively the freedom to assemble as a public gathering and the exercise of free speech. The City of Calgary is in violation of the Canadian Charter, Section 2 Fundamental Freedoms: the constitutional freedom to peacefully assemble, freedom of expression, and freedom of association.
On June 5, 2017 the City of Calgary issued a permit for the June 24 Say NO to Hate and Racism Festival at Rotary Park. This festival is a peaceful inclusive family event focused on raising awareness about hate and racism, and unity around that awareness.
On June 19, 2017 and five days before the Festival, the City of Calgary revoked permit citing that the event is Islamophobic and anti-Muslim. The City ignored our evidence refuting the claim. In addition, the decision to revoke the permit came in part from the City Council, and the City has been trying to further sabotage the event by encouraging guest speakers to not attend. Further, even if the Festival was so-called Islam-phobic and anti-Muslim, as long as it is within the bounds of the law, the City does not have the right to censor free speech and deny the right to assemble peacefully in a public gathering, or judge groups based upon association.
The Say NO to Hate and Racism Festival was comprised of a diverse range of speakers including a Muslim political speaker and a number of diverse religious speakers. In addition, the Festival was comprised of live music and a non-perishable food drive for the homeless, and face painting and bouncy castle for children. The Mayor and all the Councillors were invited, and including many student groups of the University of Calgary that included Muslim and Iranian student groups.
The purpose of the Festival was to create unity through dialogue. Instead the City of Calgary violated our Charter rights and the opportunity to create unity.
Ms. Chantal Karkour