Additional Proposed Class Members and Other Updates

There have been some important updates regarding the proposed G20 class action lawsuit started by Sherry Good, including that:

  1. The lawsuit has been expanded to include all charged people who were held in the G20 detention centre on Eastern Avenue (as detailed below);
  2. The Ontario Provincial Police and the Peel Police are now Defendants in the lawsuit; and
  3. A “certification” hearing has been scheduled for December 3-7, 2012.

The changes to the lawsuit were formally made on October 12, 2011 when we filed a revised Statement of Claim with the Court. See below for further details.

– More Charged People Included in the Class Action –

The lawsuit has been expanded to include people who were held in the G20 Eastern Avenue Detention Centre (if they were arrested on June 26th or 27th), including people who were charged with a criminal offence. Previously, many people who were charged with offences were not included in the lawsuit. We have included these additional charged people for the wrongful treatment they experienced in the detention centre. Because of this shared experience, the legal arguments for these people share “common issues.” This is an important legal requirement in class action lawsuits.

The lawsuit also addresses the initial circumstances surrounding the arrests of the charged people in the Queen’s Park and the university gymnasium subclasses. That is because there are “common issues” surrounding these initial arrests. For example, people were charged for unlawful assembly at Queen’s Park even though the assembly was lawful. The lawfulness of that demonstration is a “common issue.”

However, for other charged people (i.e. those not arrested at Queen’s Park or the university gymnasium), the lawsuit primarily challenges their wrongful treatment in the detention centre. The lawsuit does not, for now, address the initial circumstances surrounding the arrest of these charged people. That is because we have not, at this point, identified sufficient commonality in the initial arrest circumstances as is required in class action lawsuits.

We are very pleased to now include these additional charged people in the lawsuit. Please see the Statement of Claim and FAQ #4 (Am I part of the proposed class) for further details, and to confirm whether you would be covered by the lawsuit.

– New Defendants –

The Ontario Provincial Police and the Peel Police are now Defendants in the lawsuit. For more information regarding the Defendants, and their roles in the G20 policing operation, please see paragraphs 4 to 8 and 14 to 24 in the Statement of Claim.

– Other Updates –

As you may know, two G20-related class actions were filed last year. Generally, courts will only allow one of two overlapping class actions to go forward. In August, a judge decided that the Sherry Good class action should be the one to go forward. The judge decided that this would be in the best interests of the class members.

We are also pleased to announce that the Court has scheduled a date for the “certification” hearing. At the certification hearing, the judge will decide whether or not this lawsuit can be dealt with as a class action. This is largely based on whether there are enough “common issues.” The certification hearing is scheduled for December 3-7, 2012. Although the date seems very far away, that is not unusual in a legal proceeding such as this. In between now and then, both sides will exchange their evidence, cross-examine witnesses on the record, and exchange written arguments. We are already preparing for the certification hearing now.