Budget Hearings Appearance Today
TORONTO, June 6, 2012 /CNW/ - The privacy of every Ontarian will be at
risk if the Ontario Budget passes, allowing the Ontario Government to
sell ServiceOntario to a U.S.-based corporation, says Warren (Smokey)
Thomas, President of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union.
Thomas will deliver his message today to the Standing Committee on
Finance and Economic Affairs. Joining him will be prominent Toronto
lawyer Paul Cavalluzzo.
7:45 p.m., Wednesday, June 6
Room 230, Main Legislative Building, Queen's Park
The sweeping and intrusive U.S. Patriot Act gives the U.S. government
the power to order disclosure of personal information held by any U.S.
company. The orders are issued and executed in secret and without
notice to interested parties.
Cavalluzzo issues this warning: "Under Bill 55, (Budget legislation) if
ServiceOntario services are contracted out to an American corporation
or subsidiary, personal information of Ontarians could be provided to
U.S. National Security Agencies under compulsion of the U.S. Patriot
Act. Ontarians know what can happen when an Ontarian's personal
information is given to the American National Security Apparatus. Just
ask Maher Arar."
Ontario privacy legislation will not protect Ontarians, lawyers have
advised. Natural Resources Minister Michael Gravelle incorrectly stated
in the Legislature that U.S. corporations could not disclose
information without permission from Ontario.
"Ontarians must use ServiceOntario to receive critical government-issued
identification, including birth certificates, driver's licences, and
health cards," says Thomas. "There is clear danger of unwarranted and
secret intrusion into the private lives of Ontarians."
The Ontario government has already contracted with two U.S.-based firms:
Active Outdoors to manage hunting and fishing licences; and, Maximus, a
company that trades on the New York Stock Exchange, to manage the
Ontario Drug Benefit Program.
For further information:
Warren (Smokey) Thomas 613.329.1931
Paul Cavalluzzo 416.964.5500