Liberties Lost?: Surveillance Since 9/11: A Panel Presentation

“Liberties Lost?: Surveillance Since 9/11”

A Panel Presentation

4:00 - 6:00 pm, Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Alumni Auditorium in the University Centre

University of Ottawa

How have post-9/11 civil liberties eroded through the use of surveillance in Canada and beyond?

Watch the video of this event on Prism Magazine's website

You are invited to attend a panel presentation of prominent speakers, including Maher Arar, the dual Canadian/Syrian citizen who was the subject of the Canadian government’s Arar Inquiry, Alex Neve, the Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada, and Maureen Webb, author of the book Illusions of Security: Global Surveillance and Democracy in the Post-9/11 World, who will present their thoughts on national security and surveillance policies ten years after 9/11. The panel presentation is free and open to the public, and moderated by Professor Sharry Aiken, Faculty of Law, Queen's University.

The panel is a joint presentation of The New Transparency Project at Queen’s University, and the Centre for Law, Technology and Society at the University of Ottawa,in association with The Expanding Surveillance Net: Ten Years After 9/11, a research workshop 8 -10 September 2011 at Queen’s University.

A chartered coach will depart Kingston for the University of Ottawa in the afternoon on Wednesday September 7 and will return to the Donald Gordon Centre in Kingston following the event.

For more information on the panel, and to reserve a seat on the coach (space permitting), please email surveill[at]

Panelist Biographies:

Maher Arar came to public attention after he was rendered by American authorities to Syria, his native country. While imprisoned there he was subjected to torture and other degrading and inhumane treatment. He was eventually released and a public inquiry was called in Canada which cleared his name. Maher is a passionate advocate of human rights and is a frequent speaker at national security related events. In 2010, Maher founded Prism, an online not-for-profit magazine that focuses on the in-depth coverage and analysis of national security related issues. Maher's persistent and disciplined struggle has garnered him multiple recognitions and awards. TIME magazine chose Maher as the “Canadian Newsmaker of the Year” for 2004, and in 2007, the same magazine named him to the TIME 100, its annual listing of 100 most influential people in the world. He was also named “The Nation Builder” by the Globe and Mail for the year 2006.

Alex Neve believes in a world in which the human rights of all people are protected. He has served as Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada since 2000. In that role he has carried out numerous human rights research missions throughout Africa and Latin America as well as within Canada. He speaks to audiences across the country about a wide range of human rights issues, appears regularly before parliamentary committees and is a frequent commentator in the media. Alex is a lawyer, with a Masters Degree in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex. He has served as a member of the Immigration and Refugee Board, taught at Osgoode Hall Law School, been affiliated with York University's Centre for Refugee Studies, and worked as a refugee lawyer in private practice and in a community legal aid clinic. He is on the Board of Directors of Partnership Africa Canada, the Canadian Centre for International Justice and the Centre for Law and Democracy. Alex has been named an Officer of the Order of Canada and has received an honorary Doctorate of Laws degree from the University of New Brunswick.

Maureen Webb is a human rights, labour and constitutional lawyer and a former Fellow of the Human Rights Institute at Columbia University. As elected co-Chair of the International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group until 2010, she was involved with that coalition’s interventions in the Arar Inquiry, the Charkaoui challenge to the security certificates regime, the Afghan detainees case and the Abdelrazik Charter challenge. An article she wrote on the Canadian Anti-terrorism Act was cited extensively in the trial judgment in R. v Khawaja, striking down the motive element in the definition of “terrorism”. In 2004, Maureen spearheaded the International Campaign Against Mass Surveillance. Sponsored by ICLMG, Amnesty, the American Civil Liberties Union, Focus on the Global South, Statewatch and others, the campaign was launched simultaneously in Ottawa, London and San Francisco in 2005. Over 200 organizations have signed on to the campaign’s manifesto to date, and its content was recently adopted by the civil society proceedings at the 2009 International Privacy Commissioners’ Conference, reformulated as the Madrid Declaration of Global Privacy Standards for a Global World. She practices law in Ottawa with Champ and Associates.

Sharry Aiken (Moderator) is Associate Dean (Graduate Studies and Research) with the Faculty of Law at Queen's University. She is a former president of the Canadian Council Refugees and currently serves as co-chair of the CCR's Legal Affairs Committee. Her research focuses on the securitization of migration law and policy.