Brent Rathgerber: Thank you, Mr. Chair.
Thank you, Ms. Chotalia, for your presence here this afternoon and for your very impressive résumé. It's always good to see a fellow Edmontonian here in Ottawa.
Following up on my friend Mr. Murphy's questions, I do have some questions regarding the 2003 decision of Warman against Kyburz. You have it in your résumé as Kyberg but in the actual decision I think it's Kyburz, but that's not too germane to my question.
You answered in response to Mr. Murphy's question that there was unanimous decision of the tribunal, and you were a part of that adjudicative body. And I understand that Mr. Warman received compensatory damages from the adjudicatory body in the amount of $15,000. I'm really curious and concerned about that, especially in light of the ruling in paragraph 90 where it states, “Mr. Warman testified that he was not Jewish. In our view, the fact that Mr. Warman was not himself Jewish does not detract in any way from the viciousness of the attacks launched” by Mr. Kyburz.
As you may or may not know, I spend the majority of my legal career in insurance and compensatory and personal injury law, and I'm always concerned about the difference between complainants and actual victims. And in this case and from my reading of it, I didn't see that Mr. Warman was a victim. He testified that he wasn't Jewish. He in fact was an employee, as you undoubtedly know, of the Human Rights Commission at the time that this complaint was filed and adjudicated. I just am really curious to hear you comment, if you recollect, on why the tribunal was predisposed to award him $15,000, in light of the fact that he's not Jewish and therefore logically cannot be offended by the very, very offensive postings of Mr. Kyburz on his website.
Ms. Shirish P. Chotalia: I can again only say that the decision speaks for itself, so it would be improper for me to really voice my opinion on it. It does say exactly what it says. I can advise you that I'm aware of the issues with respect to the punitive versus compensatory issues of the legislation. And again, I think I can't say anything further. No judicial review is taken, it says what it does, and I think all parliamentarians can do.... I think the ball is right in your court. You need to address this issue as a House, as the democratic voice of Canadians, in terms of what you would like to see done with section 13, and we can only apply the law as you've written it.
Mr. Brent Rathgeber: I agree that it is incumbent upon parliamentarians to deal with the very issues raised in this decision and others...Time will tell if parliamentarians have the wit and fortitude to do just that. It’s nice to know, though, that at least one parliamentarian has a certain fake Jew’s number.