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COVID-19

Ontario doctor has allegations of misconduct over his COVID-19 social media posts withdrawn by the CPSO

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News release from The Democracy Fund

The Democracy Fund (TDF) announces that the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) today formally withdrew charges against Dr. Jean Marc Benoit, which alleged that his posts on X (formerly Twitter) during the COVID-19 pandemic were “disgraceful, dishonourable or unprofessional.”  

Dr. Benoit is a family and emergency physician who works in various clinical and hospital settings. During his career, he has assumed leadership roles, including appointments as Acting Chief of Staff and President of the Medical Staff Association at the Brantford General Hospital. Dr. Benoit also has academic and research interests and has been published in peer-reviewed medical literature.

During the early days of the declared pandemic, Dr. Benoit followed the latest data and stayed on top of COVID-19 developments. He was proactive in engaging with officials, from the hospital level through to government, asking them to employ best practices in pandemic management. 

He later moved his commentary to X, primarily posting about inadequate data, lockdown harms, conflicts of interest, treatment alternatives, and VAERS data (vaccine injuries). Ultimately, his posts became critical of the public health response and its adverse impacts on patients and the general public. This was contrary to a statement issued by the CPSO to all physicians, which cautioned them to align their opinions with governments’ public health policies. In its Notice of Hearing, sending his case to the disciplinary tribunal, the CPSO accused Dr. Benoit of making “misleading, incorrect or inflammatory statements about vaccinations, treatments and public health measures for COVID-19.”

Dr. Benoit places a high value on individual rights and on the sanctity of life, as well as scientific accuracy, and was deeply troubled by how quickly our society became swept up in the belief that everyone had to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of their personal risk profile, whether they had natural immunity, and the fact that the shots did not stop the transmission of infection. Physicians like Dr. Benoit, who publicly questioned vaccine mandates or lockdowns, were often subject to public complaints and investigations by their regulators.

Indeed, Dr. Benoit had an unblemished discipline record before he came to the CPSO’s attention in the spring of 2021, following complaints by two other physicians (whose names were not disclosed to him), prompting an investigation.  

The matter had been scheduled for a 5-day hearing, but instead concluded with a short appearance today, as Dr. Benoit pleaded “no contest” to failing to respond to a College communication, receiving a reprimand, and the CPSO formally withdrew the balance of the allegations. Dr. Benoit was represented by lawyer Lisa Bildy of Libertas Law, with the support of TDF. 

“While many physicians had concerns about novel and potentially harmful public health measures, few were willing to risk the severe financial and professional consequences of speaking up, which led to an illusion of consensus,” said Bildy. “Some, like Dr. Benoit and Dr. Gill, continued their public advocacy in spite of the risk. Thanks to TDF, they were able to present an appropriate defence of their positions with their regulator, which resulted in the withdrawal of some or all of the allegations against them.”

As Dr. Benoit stated, “I respect that the CPSO must respond to concerns about physicians’ behaviour, especially in a clinical setting. During COVID, they went further by curtailing criticism of public health measures, perhaps to contain panic. This approach may have had unintended effects on public trust. I hope that the College finds a smoother approach in the future—one that also respects individual physicians’ rights and responsibilities to advocate for the health of patients and fellow citizens, particularly under emergency situations where the facts and implications are not fully known and should not be assumed.”

To help in the fight for physicians to freely express concerns and openly debate the science on public health policies, you can make a tax-deductible donation on this page to support TDF.

For media interviews, please contact:

Lisa Bildy, Libertas Law

Email: [email protected] 

About The Democracy Fund:

Founded in 2021, The Democracy Fund (TDF) is a Canadian charity dedicated to constitutional rights, advancing education and relieving poverty. TDF promotes constitutional rights through litigation and public education. TDF supports an access to justice initiative for Canadians whose civil liberties have been infringed by government lockdowns and other public policy

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COVID-19

Ontario gov’t drops over 100 fines from COVID era for compliance violations

Published on

From LifeSiteNews

By Anthony Murdoch

Charges were withdrawn for violations of the Quarantine Act ‘due to a lack of reasonable prospect of conviction, delay, non-appearance of the government’s witness at trial, or a decision taken by the Crown not to proceed.’

Canadian legal advocacy group The Democracy Fund (TDF) says that because of generous donor support it secured the staying or withdrawal of 109 COVID-era tickets given to multiple people in Ontario.

The TDF said in a press update sent to LifeSiteNews that most often the charges were withdrawn or stayed “due to a lack of reasonable prospect of conviction, delay, non-appearance of the government’s witness at trial, or a decision taken by the Crown not to proceed.”

“It’s gratifying to see our hard work pay off, and a relief to our clients who have endured years of legal uncertainty,” TDF paralegal Jenna Little said.

“But the government is still doggedly pursuing many clients for charges that should not have been brought in the first place and consume scarce judicial resources.”

The TDF observed that its clients were charged under the Quarantine Act s.15 (failure to provide information to screening officer), s.58 (failure to complete ArriveCan, failure to arrange for quarantine), or s.66 (obstruct an officer).

It noted that the fine for each charge was around $5,000, with “with potential total fines for conviction on all charges reaching $681,250.”

“Though many of these cases have been successfully resolved, many remain,” the TDF said.

Some of the charges were issued under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, such as s.7.0.11 (obstruct an officer), which can carry a one-year jail sentence and a $10,000 fine.

The TDF stated that in “rare cases” some clients were also charged under “s.10 of the Reopening Act (gather or fail to close premises).”

The TDF noted that despite the recent court wins, there are still “hundreds” of clients who are facing “potential fines and jail time for peacefully protesting or objecting to government overreach during COVID lockdowns.”

The TDF said that during COVID the government used the opportunity to enact “rights-infringing, overbroad laws.”

“Legislators and bureaucrats zealously enforced these laws against Canadians in an effort to secure compliance and suppress peaceful protest. Fortunately, The Democracy Fund (TDF) and its team of lawyers and paralegals, with the support of generous donors, fought back,” it said.

The TDF, founded in 2021, bills itself as a Canadian charity “dedicated to constitutional rights, advancing education and relieving poverty,” by promoting constitutional rights “through litigation and public education.”

In early July, LifeSiteNews reported that TDF lawyers helped get criminal charges against a Canadian man who participated in the pro-family 1 Million March 4 Children protest over radical LGBT ideology being taught in public schools dropped by the Crown.

Over the last couple of years, the TDF has been active in helping Canadians persecuted under COVID mandates and rules fight back. Notable people it has helped include Dr. Kulvinder Kaur Gill, an Ontario pediatrician who has been embroiled in a legal battle with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) for her anti-COVID views. She has also had the help of Elon Musk.

COVID vaccine mandates, which came from provincial governments with the support of the federal government, split Canadian society. The mRNA shots have been linked to a multitude of negative and often severe side effects in children.

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COVID-19

Court decision allows Trudeau gov’t to avoid accountability on COVID travel app, top legal group says

Published on

From LifeSiteNews

By Anthony Murdoch

Four Canadians who refused to comply with the government’s border surveillance program had charges against them withdrawn, but no determination was made on the constitutionality of forcing the unvaccinated to quarantine.

A constitutional legal group says a recent court decision to withdraw charges leveled against four men who refused to go along with a COVID border surveillance program means the federal government “escaped accountability” for rules that targeted jab-free Canadians.

“This outcome is bittersweet for each of our clients,” said Chris Fleury, an attorney for the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms (JCCF), in a recent press release sent to LifeSiteNews.

“It is positive for each of them personally. On the other hand, they were deeply interested in seeking a determination of the constitutionality of the irrational and unscientific decision forcing unvaccinated Canadians to quarantine.”

Fleury noted that the court ruling means the federal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has “again escaped accountability for Covid policy decisions that breached Canadians’ Charter rights.”

The JCCF said the City of Mississauga withdrew “five charges against four Canadians who refused to comply with ArriveCAN requirements at the Toronto Pearson International Airport.”

The federal government’s $59.5 million scandal-ridden ArriveCAN travel app was introduced in April 2020 and mandated in November 2020. The app was used to track the COVID jab status of those entering the country and to enforce quarantines when deemed necessary.

When the app was mandated, all travelers entering Canada had to use it to submit their travel and contact information as well as any COVID vaccination details before crossing the border or boarding a flight.

In February, LifeSiteNews reported that Conservative Party MPs accused the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) of lying to Parliament over sweetheart contracting approvals concerning ArriveCAN.

Man revealed COVID jab status after breaking down under ‘pressure,’ then hit will $5,000 fine

“After arriving in Toronto from the Netherlands, Mr. Sly-Hooten felt that his personal medical information should remain private and chose not to disclose his vaccination status via ArriveCAN. In response, Peel Regional Police and Public Health Agency of Canada personnel detained him,” the JCCF said.

The JCCF added that “under pressure” and without any “counsel,” Sly-Hooten “broke down and revealed his vaccination status.”

“He received a $5,000 ticket for violating the Quarantine Act and was ordered to quarantine in his home for 14 days,” the JCCF explained.

The JCCF noted that it was able to help Sly-Hooten launch a constitutional challenge “against ArriveCAN, citing his right to liberty, his right to be protected from unreasonable search and seizure, his right to be free from arbitrary arrest and detention, and his right to counsel after arrest and detention – all protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.”

Other withdrawn tickets include those issued to Mark Spence, Aaron Grubb, and Evan Kraayenbrink.

The JCCF noted that, like Sly-Hooten, “each were charged for choosing not to provide information via ArriveCAN and were ordered to quarantine for 14 days.”

“Prosecutors have withdrawn the charges because they believe it is not in the public interest to expend further resources on a trial,” the JCCF said. “This outcome follows a similar pattern of ArriveCAN-related charges being dropped before their trials in what appears to be an attempt to shield the controversial program from constitutional scrutiny. In other words, charges are being dropped before the merits of constitutional challenges to ArriveCAN can be heard by the courts.”

Canadians were told ArriveCAN was supposed to have cost $80,000, but the number quickly ballooned to $54 million, with the latest number showing it cost $59.5 million.

The app itself was riddled with tech glitches along with privacy concerns from users.

Canadian Auditor General Karen Hogan announced an investigation of ArriveCAN in November 2022 after the House of Commons voted 173-149 for a full audit of the controversial app.

The House of Commons Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates (OGGO) is investigating how various companies such as Dalian, Coaradix, and GC Strategies received millions in taxpayer dollars to develop the contentious quarantine-tracking program.

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