Bedford Case Commentary
Analysis and Evaluation
The Bedford case goes hand-in-hand with many other security of the persons interest cases under section 7 of the Charter of Rights & Freedoms. Section 7 of the Charter states that “everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.” The Court stated that the purpose of section 7 is to ensure that laws that impact the rights to life, liberty and security of the person do not conflict with our basic values. The 'principles of fundamental justice’s are in place in order to understand these basic values about justice.The Court said that one of these principles is a principle against “arbitrariness, over-breadth and gross disproportionality”. A law is “arbitrary” when there is no real connection between the effect of the law and its goal. A law is “over-broad" when the effect of the law goes too far and interferes with activities that are not part of its goal. A law is “grossly disproportionate” when the effect of the law is much harsher than the benefits of achieving its goal. These are all points which relate back to the famous Bedford V. Canada case. In the Bedford case, the governments and the laws they put in place threaten health and bodily integrity of sex workers across the country. In the Bedford case, it was a unanimous decision on behalf of the court, they agreed with the applicants that the criminal prohibitions on bawdy-houses, living on the avails of prostitution, and communicating for the purposes of prostitution “do not merely impose conditions on how prostitutes operate”. They go on to further explain their point by shining light on the dangerous and hidden conditions of prostitution; it stops workers who are apart of dangerous — but legal — work from being able to protect themselves from risks. The Supreme Court found that these provisions, concerned with...
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