States of Emergency and the State of the Canadian Governments’ Mind

by Ray McGinnis

Canada’s Liberal government couldn’t justify invoking the Emergencies Act based on the existing definition in the legislation. So, it obtained a legal opinion to embellish parameters for declaring an emergency.

The 1988 Emergencies Act states that a “Public Order Emergency means an emergency that arises from threats to the security of Canada and that is so serious as to be a national emergency. As the meaning assigned by Section 2 of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service Act.”

Section 2 of the CSIS Act identifies four tests to signal that the threshold for a threat has been reached. 1) Act of Espionage, 2) Acts of Sabotage, 3) Acts of Serious Violence, and 4) Plot to overthrow the government. A threat may be domestic, like the 1970 FLQ Crisis in Quebec, or foreign.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *