About this Project:
The Secret Law Gazette is a project run by Craig Forcese, Professor of Law, University of Ottawa, as part of my National Security Law blog. The Secret Law Gazette publishes "secret laws" in the area of national security in Canada. "Secret laws" include ministerial directives, memoranda of understanding, and internal policies and procedures which affect and govern the conduct of Canada's security agencies, but are excluded from the regular publication requirements for Canadian law.
For a fuller discussion of the concept of "secret laws", see this posting and the documents linked to it.
I shall occasionally depart from "secret laws" and post other documents relevant to national security law that, while public, are difficult to find unless you know where to look.
About the Documents:
The documents archived here are versions of these instruments released through legal process -- either through access to information requests or court proceedings. The Secret Law Gazette is not a whistleblower site. I do not post materials that have been leaked or otherwise released through unofficial means.
How Secret Law Gazette is Organized:
I have assembled documents into "collections", mostly by category of instrument. I have also prepared occasional "exhibits" that categorize documents by subject matter and occasionally provide more description and analysis. These usually are outgrowths of other research projects on which I have worked. In those cases, I have provided links to academic and other articles that rely on the documents in the curated exhibits.
Document descriptions can also be keyword searched (note that best results come by selecting "boolean" search in the pull down menu at the top right of the webpage).
NB: Documents may not open properly on mobile devices (because of the pdf plugin this site uses). For best results, use a computer.
A Collective Effort:
I welcome contributions from others. This project reflects a commitment to transparency and the rule of law. It is a private intiative that I conduct in my spare time, and in support of my academic research projects. It would, therefore, benefit from serious "crowdsourcing" of materials. I do ask, however, that materials possess a reasonable "chain of custody" demonstrating their provenance as official government documents (that is, released through ATIP or legal process or the equivalent).
Analysis: Comparing the Old (2008) and New (2015) CSIS MD for Operations With the passage of Bills C-44 and C-51 in 2015, new Ministerial Directions…
Controversially, in 2011, then-Public Safety Minister Vic Toews issued “ministerial directions” to Canada’s key security and intelligence agencies on “information...
Recently Added Items
CSIS internal policy for approving threat reduction activities (pursuant to new powers given to CSIS in 2015 by Bill C-51)
Memorandum of Understanding between Communications Security Establishment (CSE) and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) Regarding threat reduction activities under s.12.1 of the CSIS Act (June 2016)
MOU establishing circumstances by which CSIS will notify CSE of its threat reduction (disruption) activities, consult with CSE and request CSE…
Policy of the Department of Justice Canada and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service on the Duty of Candour in ex parte Proceedings
Policy issued by Justice Canada and CSIS on warrant applications to the Federal Court and the duty of candour, possibly to respond to the Segal…
Advice on Implementing the Recommendations of Murray Segal's Review of CSIS Warrant Practice (March 2017) (Sims Report)
Report commissioned by Justice Canada to advice Crown counsel representing CSIS in Federal Court warrant proceedings, and make recommendations on…
Report commissioned by Justice Canada on "best practice" in ex parte warrant procedures and advice on reforming CSIS/Justice Canada warrant procedures…