23 October 2009

Add Another to the List of, "Why Not to Have Paul Fromm Represent You" Decisions

When the the Lemire decision came down in which Section 13 of the Human Rights Act was ruled to be unconstitutional by Athanasios Hadjis (a decision now being appealed) the boneheads got very excited. They also figured that this decision would reverse previous decisions made by the CHRT. In fact, Paul Fromm made demands that the penalties resulting from the Jessica Beaumont decision be reversed and that all monies paid be returned to Beaumont with interest.


September 4, 2009

Dear Mr. Hadjis:

Re: Richard Warman v. Jessica Beaumont

Dear Mr. Hadjis:

You were the Member seized of this complaint; that is, Richard Warman v. Jessica Beaumont. Hearings were held in Vancouver in December of 2006. I was Miss Beaumont's agent throughout these proceedings.

You found her guilty of a discriminatory practice, contrary to the controversial Sec. 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act and, in your decision, delivered October 26, 2007, assessed certain penalties:

[94] In assessing the appropriateness of such an order, the only messages in issue are those that reference Mr. Warman, and not the entirety of the material that has been found to be in breach of s. 13. Ms. Beaumont knew or should have known that the language she was using to attack and ridicule Mr. Warman was likely to expose him to hatred and contempt in conjunction with his identification as a Jew. The reference to "Dead Warman Society" accompanied by images of swastikas is particularly troubling. Words suggesting that harm should come to another cannot be taken lightly, even if they were made in jest. Others viewing this material on the Internet may not see it as such and take the message more seriously. Mr. Warman also points out that Message 30, for instance, was posted after Ms. Beaumont was served with the human rights complaint. Thus, rather than halting the hate messages, she continued them and began to include references to Mr. Warman by name.

[95] In the circumstances, I therefore order Ms. Beaumont to pay the sum of $3,000 in special compensation, pursuant to s. 54(1)(b) of the Act.

104] Taking all of these factors into account, I order Ms. Beaumont to pay a penalty of $1,500. Payment of the penalty shall be made by certified cheque or money order payable to the "Receiver General for Canada", and must be received by the Tribunal within 120 days of the date on which this decision is served on Ms. Beaumont.

[80] I therefore see no reason to deny the order. Ms. Beaumont is ordered to cease and desist from communicating or causing to be communicated, by the means described in s. 13 of the Act, and particularly the Internet, any matter of the type contained in the messages at issue in this case that is likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt by reason of the fact that the person or persons are identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination.

On September 2, you rendered your decision in Richard Warman v. Marc Lemire and declared Sec. 13 to be unconstitutional:

I have also concluded that s. 13(1) in conjunction with ss. 54(1) and (1.1) are inconsistent with s. 2(b) of the Charter, which guarantees the freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression. The restriction imposed by these provisions is not a reasonable limit within the meaning of s. 1 of the Charter.

Miss Beaumont complied with your orders and paid her fine in full and the $3,000 awarded to Richard Warman. Ironically, Mr. Warman obtained a court order and a further $3,000 was removed from Miss Beaumont's account after she had purchased a draft to pay him. It was some weeks before this money was returned to her.

In light of your decision in Warman v. Lemire, I seek:

1. that you rescind the "cease and desist" order. This is especially vital, as it is a legal burden hanging over Miss Beaumont for life, an obligation to silence under a law you hold is a violation of the Charter! Your "cease and desist" order is doubly onerous, as Miss Beaumont, who is not a lawyer, is enjoined not to communicate messages of |"the type contained in the messages at issue in this case." Yet, in your ruling, you found that "many," but not all, the impugned messages in the complaint violated Sec. 13.

[74] In sum, I find that in most of the impugned messages, Ms. Beaumont engaged in the communication of matter that was likely to expose persons identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination (namely race, religion, national or ethnic origin, and sexual orientation), to hatred or contempt.

Thus, Miss Beaumont has no guidance as to which messages were deemed acceptable.

2. that you cancel the $3,000 award to Mr. Warman and order that he return these monies, plus interest back to the date of the decision, to Miss Beaumont.

3. that you cancel the $1,500 fine imposed on Miss Beaumont and order that these monies, plus interest back to the date of the decision, be returned to Miss Beaumont.

Sincerely yours,

Paul Fromm

So how did that go?

One would think that Paulie would be used to failing by now.

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