Ramping up its fight against Premier Doug Ford’s anti-carbon tax gas pump stickers, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association is launching a new video called “fill up on free speech” to drive the point home with the public and seek financial support for a court challenge.
The video filmed with a gas station in the background features CCLA head Michael Bryant, a former Liberal attorney general of Ontario, describing the stickers as “government propaganda” and arguing they are unconstitutional because they amount to compelled political speech for gas station owners.
“We don’t think the government should force anyone to promote the government message,” Bryant says, wearing a black T-shirt and noting the sticker “does not tell the whole story” of carbon pricing, now an issue in the Oct. 21 federal election campaign.
“If you believe in freedom…help us fight back, help us have this law declared unconstitutional.”
Under a law passed earlier this year by the Ford government, gas station owners face daily fines if they don’t post the stickers — many of which have peeled off because of problems with the adhesive — on their pumps.
The peeling problem has been an embarassment for Ford, whose family company Deco Labels is in the sticker business but did not make the stickers in question.
Bryant invites viewers to share the video on social media and to contribute the cost of a tank of gas on the CCLA’s website to help fuel the fight.
Energy Minister Greg Rickford’s office has not yet replied to a request for comment, but has said previously it is standing by the stickers.
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