Pub Bans and Sealing Orders


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Windels v Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, 2022 SKCA 72

The Saskatchewan Court of Appeal applied the test in Sherman Estate in lifting a sealing order and pub ban. It clarified the requirement for evidence to support such an application, commenting on  A.B. v Bragg Communications Inc., at paragraphs 51 and 54:

51.  A.B. v Bragg Communications Inc., 2012 SCC 46, [2012] 2 SCR 567 [A.B.], Abella J. commented that “while evidence of a direct, harmful consequence to an individual applicant is relevant, courts may also conclude that there is objectively discernable harm” despite the absence of direct evidence of harm, “by applying reason and logic” (at paras 15 and 16). Although this statement might suggest a lower standard than that specified in Sierra Club, it too must be understood in context. It does not mean that reason and logic alone will suffice, or that no evidence is required; rather, it reflects the fact that whether the evidence meets the “well-grounded” standard depends on the nature of the risk at issue.

54.  In the result, A.B. does not undermine the requirement specified in Sierra Club that the risk must be well-grounded in the evidence, in light of the nature of the risk and public interest at issue.