In a national ramp-up of security, the RCMP has stopped identifying the names of victims accidents, car crashes and crimes.
The authorities won’t say when or why it adopted the new approach. The Mounties say they are bound by a 30-year old federal Privacy Act – and refuse to explain why secrecy is suddenly the new default, even in cases where a victim’s family wishes their loved one’s name be known to the public.
David Fraser, a privacy law expert with McInnes Cooper in Halifax, said the Privacy Act was not expressly written to stop the identification of all victims. On the contrary, he said, police forces could just as easily read the “antiquated” law the other way, because it allows for disclosure of information if it is consistent or compatible with the reason it was collected in the first place.
Why are the RCMP doing this? Whose rights rule here?
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