No procedural fairness obligations in relation to contribution agreements

Federal court | Administrative Law

DUTY TO ACT FAIRLY

No procedural fairness obligations in relation to contribution agreements

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) had Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) program that provided funding for language instruction. CIC had provided funding to Canadian Arab Federation (CAF) under LINC program for many years. Minister of Citizenship and Immigration decided to discontinue funding to CAF under LINC program. Minister’s decision was based on CAF having made statements that promoted hatred, anti-Semitism, and support for banned terrorist organizations. Minister declined request to meet with CAF. CAF brought application for judicial review. Application dismissed. Minister did not owe duty of procedural fairness to CAF. Nature of relationship was strictly commercial. There was no statutory provision that imposed procedural fairness obligations in relation to contribution agreements. There was no contractual provision stipulating service provider organizations would be treated in procedurally fair manner. Imposing procedural rights would unduly burden Minister. Parties’ rights were best protected by reviewing court’s assessment of reasonableness of decision. In absence of duty of procedural fairness, no consideration had to be given to issue of reasonable apprehension of bias.
Canadian Arab Federation v. Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration) (Dec. 23, 2013, F.C., Russel W. Zinn J., File No. T-447-09) 237 A.C.W.S. (3d) 4.

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