No appeal of Federal Court dismissal of ArriveCAN court action as moot

The Justice Centre has carefully reviewed the Federal Court Decision in the constitutional challenge Yates et al v. Canada to the mandatory use of the ArriveCAN app, which the court declared moot on July 19, 2023.  The Justice Centre has come to the decision not to pursue further appeals.

Unfortunately, the Federal Court has demonstrated through this decision, as well as its mootness ruling in Peckford v. Canada, that it is not willing to consider the egregious violations of the Charter right to travel freely within Canada, and to leave and re-enter Canada freely. After abundant and extensive evidence had been tendered by both the government and by the Canadians asserting their Charter freedoms, the Federal Court has declared these challenges to be moot, even though serious constitutional issues are crying out for resolution. Given the Federal Court’s recent decisions, moving forward with further appeals is highly unlikely to produce any positive results.

We fought hard to secure justice for Joanne Walsh, Amanda Yates, and nine other Applicants, who along with many other Canadians, have suffered injustice because of the government’s mandatory requirement to use the ArriveCAN app. We regret that our decision not to pursue further appeals is the best option in these circumstances.

Despite the Federal Court’s decision to declare these important and unresolved issues moot, we are looking to potentially advance the ArriveCAN Charter challenges through the provincial courts, by defending against the tickets that Applicants have received, in the hope of avoiding further declarations of mootness. The fact that a Canadian citizen is being prosecuted for violating a law means that the law is effectively still in force, and therefore not moot.

We are grateful to the many freedom-loving Canadians who continue to support our work in nearly 200 active cases across Canada. We will continue to fight for your rights and freedoms every day, holding governments to account and fighting for freedom in the court of law as well as the court of public opinion.


John Carpay, B.A., LL.B.


Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms


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