Canadian common law courts are still far behind the English courts which have developed a much more flexible tort of misuse of private information, as well as remedies for breach that include damages to compensate for the loss or diminution of a right to control private information, and now following the PJS case, perhaps also exemplary or punitive damages and an accounting of profits. Surprisingly, Canadian courts have not had to canvass recently whether the English common law tort of misuse of private information should be adopted in Canada.
Recent news in the media has highlighted competing perspectives on mental health, one story focusing on the importance of mental health privacy, and the other campaigning for speaking out about mental health. Wednesday Jan 27, 2016 has been designated as the Bell Let’s Talk day, meaning let’s talk about mental illness, as part of Bell’s multi-year campaign around the issue. This seems in contrast to a recent human rights decision about student mental health privacy rights at York University.
I have a particular interest in technology and its impact on the workplace. A key consequence of the impact of technology is our evolving relationship with privacy rights. As our lives become more digital, our privacy is more difficult to control. Deactivating my Facebook account is not the same as drawing the shades on my front window. Who knows where all that data continues to hang out online and who has access to it?
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