Edmonton Northlands denies K-Days booth to pro-life group after 15 years of inclusion

EDMONTON: The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms (JCCF.ca) has made a formal request for Edmonton Northlands to reconsider its refusal to permit Edmonton Pro-Life (EPL) to have a booth at the 2017 K-Days festival, which takes place this year from July 21 – July 30.

EPL has had a booth at K-Days for over 15 consecutive years, and never had difficulty registering.  On January 6, 2017, a Northlands “Exhibit Sales Specialist” informed EPL that EPL would no longer be permitted to have a booth at K-Days.  Northlands claims to have adopted a “new policy” prohibiting “political and religious organizations” from having booths at K-Days.

K-Days is operated on property owned entirely by the City of Edmonton. Northlands receives the bulk of its funds from government, and numerous government representatives and employees are on the board of Northlands. The Justice Centre explains in its letter to Northlands that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies to their decision to prevent the expression of EPL, and is an infringement of section 2(b) of the Charter.

The Justice Centre’s letter states that Northlands’ position is also “unreasonable, violates the administrative law principles of procedural fairness, has the appearance of bias, and fails to meet the standard of proper exercise of discretion.”

The Justice Centre’s letter requests that Northlands respond by Wednesday, June 28, 2017.