Canadian Falun Gong Practitioner Wins Lawsuit, Major Media Follow the Verdict with Interest (Photo)
(Clearwisdom.net) On January 25, 2006, the Ontario Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Falun Dafa Association published a press release about a ruling from the Ontario Human Rights Court. The verdict said that the Ottawa Senior Chinese Cultural Association violated the Human Rights Code.
The Human Rights Tribunal's Expert Evidence said, "Western scholars of religion would characterize Falun Gong as a new religious movement. The essence of Falun Gong is spiritual elevation. Falun Gong practitioners believe in the existence of gods and divine beings in the cosmos. Its leader, Li Hongzhi, has written a form of 'scripture.' His message is profoundly moral."
The findings for Ms. Huang included the following:
1. Her practice of Falun Gong constitutes a creed within the meaning of the Code.
2. Her right to equal treatment with respect to services without discrimination based on creed was infringed by the Respondents, contrary to Sections 1 and 9 of the Code.
3. The Respondents are jointly and severally liable for these breaches.
The court ordered the Ottawa Senior Chinese Cultural Association to compensate Ms. Huang C$18,000.
This raised wide awareness among Canadian media and many ran reports on this ruling.
The Globe and Mail reported that the Ontario Human Rights Commission's verdict included Falun Gong, which is banned by the Chinese Communist Party, in the range of "creed."
The report also cited words from Jeff Poirier, the spokesperson of the OHRC, that the verdict didn't mean that Falun Gong is a religion. OHRC's definition of "creed" has a wider meaning than religion.
The CTV station conducted interviews at the Ottawa Senior Chinese Cultural Association and in Chinatown and broadcast the story in the evening news. When a reporter called the Ottawa Senior Chinese Cultural Association, no one answered the phone. In an interview, Ms. Huang said that the Chinese Communist party has extended the persecution of Falun Gong to foreign countries and stirs up hatred. She appealed to stop the Chinese Communist Party's persecution.
CBC TV, the Ottawa Citizen, and the Ottawa Sun also interviewed and reported on this event.