Dear Honourable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The Right Hon. Justin Trudeau, P.C., M.P. Prime Minister House of Commons Ottawa, ON
June 26, 2017
Dear Honourable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau,
Recently the Canadian government were presented with a difficult moral dilemma. Simplifying things: Do you pay a terrorist group from the Philippines a ransom for the life of a Canadian citizen?
Your agonizingly difficult decision was NO with an explanation, ‘we do not cater to terrorist demands’. A Canadian citizen then lost the life he didn't want to lose under the most barbaric conditions. One cannot imagine the terror and pain. The family of the victim, conditioned on the public narrative of such circumstances, concedes ‘you did the right thing’.
Was it morally the right decision?
On Thursday June 15, 2017, I began my fourth “starvation hunger strike” seeking access to fair social justice from York University my former employer and the Supreme Court of Canada on a public health issue of significant national importance.
As a consequence I now, very regrettably, present to you, Prime Minster Justin Trudeau, your government and Canadian Parliament another moral dilemma. Do you let a Canadian citizen a former Canadian World Cup soccer player - who wants to live in Canada as a nation that is fair, equal and just - harm himself any further or die of starvation in front of your own eyes or do you intervene and do what is morally right?
On July 3, 1980 as a sixteen year old boy I arrived in Toronto, as a landed immigrant from Cardiff, Wales. Your father Pierre Trudeau was the Prime Minister and you were a small boy. During the period 1983-93 I had the honour of representing the Canadian World Cup and Olympic soccer teams during the most successful period of our national men’s soccer program.
In 2001 I was the Canadian U20 men’s national soccer coach which qualified for the FIFA World Youth Championships in Argentina and in 2008 I was a staff coach with our Canadian U20 women’s team which won a CONCACAF Championship in Mexico.
From 2003-2009 while I was employed at York University over a six year period the York soccer programs experienced unprecedented success. From moribund beginnings in 2003 the teams won 4 provincial OUA championships, one national championship - the first in any sport for 25 years - and copious other awards.
I am a three time Canadian soccer hall of fame inductee and I have attained education at the BA and MBA levels.
Over a lifetime I have experienced three mental health conditions. Social Anxiety, Depression, and a Substance Use Disorder all three subjecting me to significant social isolation.
The mental health challenges I have faced in my life are similar to the ones your mother Margaret and your honourable wife Sophie Gregoire have endured, learned to live with and eventually conquered. In a recent interview, Mrs Trudeau eloquently and introspectively expressed her feelings during the most difficult times of her eating disorder. To paraphrase, “I did not know what to do”; “I was paralyzed by the fear of being open”; “People just kept telling me to eat”.
These are precisely the self-stigmatizing thoughts persons with substance use disorders experience. Don’t know what to do; paralyzed fear about being open; of being stigmatized and disgraced; of losing everything; of never working again. And of course, “People keep telling you, ‘to stop?’
Substance use disorders as I understand more thoroughly today through my own experience and research are not illnesses or diseases. Rather they are evidence based mental health disorders which can lead to illness and disease. Rob Ford is a poignant example of such a trajectory.
Substance use disorders are human problems. Acquiring good health from such conditions therefore requires a humanistic approach including the absolute necessity of remaining employed with understanding support not an ostracizing, discriminatory one.
Your Honourable Health Minister Jane Philpotts will confirm the number one social determinant of health is employment which provides a person with income; a purpose in life; psychological well being and dignity amongst many other essential and desirable benefits.
Consider, from 1998 my first impaired choice to use crack cocaine until 2008 the year when I was diagnosed with a substance use disorder, was also, the most successful professional, academic, and financial period of my life.
Now in 2017 after responsibly opening up to my employers and colleagues at York University and GOL TV in 2008 I have lost everything and I am destitute. Complete utter humiliation.
In April 2009, weeks after returning from my first rehab visit I was fired from my part-time soccer analyst job with GOL TV for “no reason”. Eight months later I was requested to formalize my resignation as master soccer coach at York University.
What has happened in my case is the antithesis of what needs to happen to person’s who responsibly seek help and support for a substance use disorder. In the United Arab Emirates persons in rehab will not be discharged unless they have employment which the organization facilitates if necessary. Former England and Arsenal international soccer star Paul Merson who suffered alcohol, gambling, and drug addictions has never been unemployed as the soccer bodies and media made sure he worked. Even when there were public periods of poor health the employment support merely became stronger.
Since 2009 I have not worked full time and consequently I have no job, no assets, no money, no pension, no social status, lost career a passion I spent a lifetime building, and a decimated reputation through deliberate judicial system defamation leading to a shattered sense of wellbeing. I have worked as a dog walker, house cleaner, addictions coach, I have raked leaves and I have not received an email in response to positions I have applied for including full time head coaching employment.
My circumstances today are not because of a poor attitude, self loathing, 24/7 substance use, mental illness or any other stereotyped reason put forth through ignorance or the unscrupulous positioning of others. Rather they are a result of the appalling actions of an academic institution, York University, in their handling of my health and well being in 2008/09 and then their untenable position on the mistakes they made in my regard delivered to a Canadian Judicial system which has discriminated against, prejudiced, and stereotyped my human rights claim, my life circumstances and myself as a person throughout the five year process of seeking an access to justice as a self represented Applicant.
Prime Minister Trudeau, in 2015, during your platform speeches across the country you requested all Canadians to have faith and to trust in the Canadian Judicial system. Well I did.
Over the past five years of the judicial process I have had to navigate, not limited to, the following:
• York University submissions containing deceit including York’s egregious denial they knew of my poor mental health ultimately because it was determinative of discrimination.
• Yet York University (and the Canadian judicial system) had documented medical confirmation of my poor mental health at their Employee Wellness Office since February 2009 which they requested from my family doctor after they were informed by the York University Athletic Director whom I told of my poor mental health and need for three months leave of absence in November 2008 stating to her I had been unwell for some time. I used the metaphor when you wake up and see blue sky I only see grey clouds to clearly establish I was suffering psychological poor health. The athletic director granted my leave for three months with the proviso that I would have to provide a doctors note and she would have to inform the Employee Wellness office.
• The HRTO adjudicator in bad faith deliberately dismissed my claim in 2013/14 at the preliminary stage of proceedings through discriminatory rejection of medical evidence for one false deficiency after another. And he did so because if my claim proceeded to a Tribunal hearing York University would be caught out in the lie, that, “they did not know of my poor mental health” which, again, is the main thread, determinative of discrimination.
• Consequently the HRTO adjudicator in bad faith was also blatantly deceitful; he completely ignored cited case law from York University which required medical evidence to “indicate” which the evidence I provided clearly went beyond the threshold requirement and instead manipulated the requirement to be explicit; he “ridiculed” my financial circumstances and then demonstrated an egregious abuse of power in trying to justify his decision to dismiss my 60 page request for reconsideration and 38 appendices of evidence which connected the dots on the true reality of this matter.
• I did not file my taxes with the Canadian government for the years 2009, 2010, 2011 until the fall of 2012 in spite of being owed $18,000 in refunds because I did not have the mental capacity to do so replicating my inability to file a human rights application until October 2012.
• The HRTO adjudicator not only ignored this evidence on my inability to file taxes he also eliminated all significant intersecting social factors of disadvantage from the adjudication process which was ruthlessly discriminatory compared to persons who file within the one year period. You cannot separate substance use disorders from the social context in which those that suffer live on a day to day basis. Social consequences of a persons substance use are inextricably intertwined in diagnosing, treating, and monitoring those that suffer. A claim filed during the one-year limitation period would be adjudicated with the totality of evidence including any social intersecting factors such as paralyzing societal and self stigma which the adjudicator again irresponsibly ignored.
• From the Divisional Court of Ontario, Justice Edwards used inappropriate, deliberate prejudicial, stereotyped comments on the nature of my health throughout his decision rationale which was a violation of my purported right under Section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to be protected.
• Then Justice Edwards inappropriately and corruptly ruled on the merits of the case through the following sentence, “Eventually, the depression and other physical and medical consequences of such an addiction resulted in Mr. James resigning from his position at York in December 2009”.
• What Justice Edwards “forgot” was to add a comma and the words, “because of the poor treatment, lack of support, excommunication, harassment, and discrimination he faced at York University.
• As important he “forgot” that I resigned in October 2009 because the York Athletic Director requested I formalize my resignation instead of providing support, assistance and accommodation for my poor mental health.
• December 2009 as referenced by Justice Edwards was when the most egregious moment of discrimination took place.
• The Athletic Director and Executive Director of Sport York days after I had retuned from my second rehab, in a meeting I requested to speak about maintaining my employment, told me my Master soccer coaching position which I was still employed in had been devolved because she said it didn't work; they had agreed to hire the part-time mens coach for the newly created full time men’s position without any due process while she sated I could apply for the women’s soccer coaching position and my application would only be considered with other applicants and this five minutes after I walked into the office with a greeting from the manager of inter-university sport stating, that, “The Athletic Director” hopes you have your head screwed on straight this time’. Three weeks earlier I led the York University women’s soccer program to their third OUA provincial championship in five years. They haven't won one since I was there. In fact York women have only ever won 3 OUA Championships. To add to the absurdity in 2011 the master soccer title was reassigned and given to the York mens soccer coach.
• The final deficiency with Justice Edwards statement is that he got the sequence of my health issues the wrong way round. My substance use disorder was a consequence of my social anxiety, depression and social isolation. The substance use perpetuated the cycle.
• With all this information before the court Justice Edwards statement was a premeditated, inappropriate, deceitful ruling on the merits of the case which was purposefully used to harm and prejudice my claim moving forward.
• As a consequence it also ignited the National Post newspaper to write a defamatory article with the title, “Former Olympian who resigned his position at York University because of crack use failed to prove he was discriminated against” which absolved York University in the public eye not just legally and guaranteed my collegiate soccer coaching career was definitively over.
• Then from the Ontario Court of Appeal Justice Gillese was unethical in awarding $1,000 costs to Respondent York University in spite of the knowledge of my dire socioeconomic circumstances and Respondents declaration of “no costs”. The ruling gave the clear appearance it was intimidation aimed at halting my path to justice. Gillese the previous year was a key note speaker at a Queens University event sponsored by York counsel McCarthy Tetrault highlighting clear conflict of interest and an apprehension of bias.
In spite of all this and much more I still held the belief that truth and justice would be sought and provided at the Supreme Court of Canada. After researching and hearing the honourable Chief Justice Beverly McLachlin speak across Canada she emphasized the following:
• The immediate need to improve access to justice for Canadian citizens who cannot afford to retain legal counsel and who become self-represented Applicants along with the need for the system to treat such persons with respect and dignity.
• The immediate need to improve how disadvantaged persons with poor mental health and substance addictions are treated by the Canadian judicial system.
• Canada has, a “just”, non-corrupt legal system highly regarded on a global basis.
Canada’s most revered and respected Canadian female, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada adjudicated my Leave to Appeal file - I was hopeful.
As a former Canadian international soccer player and coach who on the international stage along with my teammates represented Canada with dignity, courage, relentless effort, great pride and total belief in Canada as a nation I have never been so discouraged and shamed than at the moment I recognized through the improper and unfair, unethical administration and adjudication of my claim at the Supreme Court of Canada, our most treasured institution, that what we communicate to the world on who we are as Canadians, represented by our purported “justice, equality, and fairness”, is an apparent illusion.
The Honourable Chief Justice has stated on record that the treasured court does make mistakes, they are not perfect and when legitimately confronted they will expeditiously correct the injustice. I am confronting this reality on the basis of the following:
• Two recent law clerks of the Chief Justice both now work for McCarthy Tretault (York University’s counsel) whose own General Counsel is a part of York University Law faculty. It gives the appearance to any right minded Canadian citizen of a conflict of interest, apprehension of bias and impropriety especially when one also considers:
• The Chief Justice McLachlin's passionate stance on improving the treatment and opportunity for self-represented Applicants to access fair social justice along with better treatment to applicants with poor mental health and substance addictions through the Judicial process. My file before the court was an opportunity to deliver on improving these observations.
• The deliberate unscrupulous action by the SCC law branch in delaying my file by 10 weeks. On January 4 (electronic copy) and 5 (hard copy) 2016, I submitted my leave for appeal application to the Supreme Court of Canada. In doing so my partner at the time and I requested, through phone calls to the administrative branch of the court if my Application was deficient in any way. The court (Pascal) unfairly stated no and announced on January 5, 2016 through SCC website that certificate had been approved followed by written confirmation that application had been completed on January 6/7, 2016 as communicated via the SCC website. Two and a half months later, I was informed by the court (Pascal) that my application was in fact deficient, delaying the application process by over two months which now required an amended application and a motion for an extension of time which once again infringed upon my right to be treated equally and fairly. The inappropriate actions of the administrative branch who knew of the applications deficiency on January 4/5 because the error of applying for Leave from the “Divisional Court of Ontario” instead of the Ontario Court of Appeal appeared in the incorrect writing of six capitalized words not only on the front cover of my submitted documents but also on pages 1, 3, 7 and 9. It is very unreasonable for any Canadian citizen to conclude this was merely an innocent error by the administration of the SCC.
• Then on May 9, 2016, the law branch of the Supreme Court of Canada in their dissemination of their Case Summary on my file (#36795) via their website, inappropriately used Justice Edwards fraudulent and inappropriate ruling on the merits of the case from the Divisional Court of Ontario, “Depression and other physical and medical consequences of such an addiction resulted in Mr. James resigning from his position at York in December 2009.”
• Again, this deceitful statement prejudiced and discriminated my claim beyond repair to the Canadian public and to the honourable judges of the Supreme Court of Canada. It was a statement I contested in my submissions to the Ontario Court of Appeal; to the Supreme Court of Canada and directly to the chief editor of the National Post newspaper Ms. Anne Marie Owens. The law branch of the SCC would have known that the statement was inappropriate. Based on reasonableness the law branch would have been able to ascertain that it was a deceitful ruling on the merits of the case because all the evidence was there for them to ferret out and then decipher the impropriety. It was plain and obvious for an institution of such stature. At a bare minimum it required debate and correction by the SCC judges not the law branch or administration arm of the institution to willfully ignore its inappropriateness and significance in prejudicing the matter before the court and in the public eye.
• Any reader of the closed sentence via the SCC website Case Summary, decision rationale or in any other forum would be unfairly influenced to conclude that I did not leave York University because of the accumulative discrimination, poor treatment, harassment and lack of support. Yet the overwhelming evidence I provided through the judicial process confirmed I left York because of discrimination which was deliberately ignored by the SCC law branch. In light of the fact the SCC judges do not give explanations as to why they dismiss leave to appeal applications, the case summary in this particular claim identifies that the system can be and was used (tacitly) in my instance to unfairly and improperly communicate a false “explanation” of why an application was dismissed.
• Only after rigorous challenges did the SCC remove the statement and only after my claim had been dismissed. And the reason the registrar from the Supreme Court of Canada eventually removed the statement was not because I objected to it but precisely because it was wrong confirming the impropriety has unfairly prejudiced and discriminated against my claim since June 23, 2015 preventing me from accessing social justice from extreme injustice with catastrophic consequences to my life.
The truth of the Paul James matter to all Canadians will reveal at its core that persons diagnosed with Substance Use Disorders are not at all protected under Section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. In spite of the fact the Supreme Court of Canada in past rulings, have determined substance addictions as disabilities requiring protection it has clearly not filtered down to the lower courts system nor to Canadian society. Fundamentally, this is why I am in the position I am in today facilitated by the unfathomable decisions of my former employer York University in not resolving this matter five years ago and instead choosing to cover it up.
Without an amended Charter to explicitly include substance use disorders all Canadians are harmed, economically, socially and morally. Mental disability under section 15 of the Charter does not cover substance use disorders just like the Canadian Mental Health Association does not list substance use disorders on their extensive list of mental health conditions. And its the same with Bell Canada’s Lets talk campaign. The elephant in the room is,
“If you have a substance use disorder - then lets NOT talk”.
Why would anyone who suffers in silence be empowered to come forward to seek help with consideration of the Paul James story. I was better off risking my life at all costs by not opening up to seek support and assistance when my poor mental health reached its zenith at York University.
Without change, it exposes Canadians that suffer in the most segregated ostracized segment of society to perpetual unequal, unfair, prejudicial, discriminatory treatment. Untreated poor mental health leaves an annual economic burden of $51 billion for all Canadians to reconcile of which substance use disorders contribute a significant portion - a concern for all political parties.
Prime Minister, recently, you justifiably commented on the Honourable Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin and her considerable contributions to Canada and Canadian society. You stated her judicial accomplishments are “unparalleled in Canadian history” and “reach into every part of our law. Canadians owe her an immense debt.”
A legacy to be proud of.
My 78 page affidavit and 10 page Statement of Argument which I presented to the Supreme Court of Canada as a request to reconsider my leave to appeal application comprehensively connects the dots on the path of appalling injustice and abuse I have faced over the past 8 years. Both were returned and not filed on public record.
Why would the Honourable Chief Justice permit this?
Was it because I was a self-represented applicant who will not be permitted to receive justice? How can the Canadian Judicial system pick and choose when to correct clear injustice? The following passage is from the Affidavit.
“I assert to the SCC that the plain and obvious motivation and opportunity of the main stakeholders in this matter to engage in unethical behaviour is extremely high: A selfrepresented Applicant outlining his crack cocaine addiction, depression and anxiety, confronting the overt discrimination from an academic institution, York University, who house the prestigious law school Osgoode Hall, who retained a top law firm in Canada, McCarthy Tetrault, to defend their untenable position, both of whom have political tentacles which reach far and wide, illustrated through two of McCarthy Tetrault’s current staff lawyers who recently worked as law clerks to the honourable Chief Justice Beverly McLachlin".
At the same time these documents were being reviewed and returned to me, York University through a Toronto Star article promoted the academic award given to a former “imprisoned crack cocaine addict” whom they communicated had been “clean” for five years. The person should have been given the award for his academic prowess not because of his mental health circumstances. Supposing his disability returns, do York take back the academic award? The piece was not coincidental. It tries to disguise their callous approach to my own circumstances.
Most revealing with this undignified action by York University - which sets Canadian society back a generation from improving the stigma of drug addiction - is the public use of the word “clean” which further conditions Canadian society to not regard substance use disorders as mental disabilities. Knowing the addiction epidemic within Canadian society and the colossal failing of the “war on drugs” approach, intervention from the Supreme Court of Canada is desperately needed to establish explicitly that substance use disorders are in fact bona-fide mental health disabilities which require exclusive protection.
The question, “are you clean” is synonymous with classifying “substance addictions” as criminal matters, bad behaviours, you just need to stop, go into a rehab as a dirty addict and come out clean; you cannot work any more unless you are clean; you are disgraced; you can have an opinion but only if it does not aggrieve anyone because if it does you are a junkie, a crackhead, or an addict.
Most egregious is the implied notion that we have a simple solution for substance use disorders - just go to rehab and just stop!! But we don’t have easy solutions and its costing Canadian society lives and billions of dollars.
Think hockey legend Bob Probert - nine very expensive ineffective rehabs and then dies. And the list of similar circumstances is never ending, which we choose to ignore.
Progressively, we should understand substance use disorders as “learned behaviours” which first and foremost need to be controlled through learning to live with the disorder in line with harm reduction methodologies. Abstinence is the optimum but for some persons it is not always possible most often because of socio-economic status; for some, abstinence is impossible. Are you well or unwell, healthy or unhealthy are appropriate less-stigmatizing questions in the event that substance use appears to have developed into a period of addiction - see AMY Winehouse documentary towards the end.
Some people use. Some people become addicted. Some recover to full abstinence. A person that smokes tobacco or drinks alcohol does not have to endure the judgment of, “are you clean” - a smokescreen for, “do you use” - because in reality if we use the inappropriate question to people who consume alcohol then most of the Canadian population would not be clean.
Not all Muslims are terrorists. Not all Catholic Priests are pedophiles; Not all black men are drug dealers. Not all white men are racists. Not all persons who use crack cocaine are nonfunctional, criminal, immoral people.
On the contrary Prime Minister my story and background of success up to and including taking my case as a self-represented applicant to two levels of the Supreme Court of Canada illuminates an important point, that persons with substance use disorders to crack cocaine can still be functional, smart, very successful, respectful and responsible people.
Ten days into my fourth hunger strike I am able to function with limits because I intake low calorie amounts just to sustain myself. In between I sleep like a hamster. However, in delivering this communication to you, on July 1, 2017 Canada’s 150th birthday I am transitioning into a “total starvation hunger strike” - only consuming water and broth as a source of sodium - in isolation. It is one of only three remaining morsels of bargaining power I have at my disposal to redress the injustice I have faced and the harm non-correction will deliver to Canadian society.
Which brings me to the moral dilemma of my hunger strike protest for the Canadian parliament and Canadian government to debate and reconcile.
I am not protesting in this way as a consequence of mental illness or a desire to not exist anymore. I want to live. I am not requesting the Canadian government to prove there is a God, nor am I requesting the Canadian Parliament to turn water into wine or permit the Toronto Maple Leafs to finally win a Stanley Cup. I am not a terrorist demanding money and I am not a fisherman demanding more fish to fish.
I have a street fighting mentality from Cardiff, Wales. My grandfather worked in the tough steelworks and dock areas of Cardiff and socialized on Bute Street and Devils Bay in the same pubs Shirley Bassey busked her way to a living. I was a tenacious rugby player, I never lost a fitness run in ten years of playing for Canada and I returned to play for our national team in 1987 ten days after being knocked out cold for 8 minutes, vomiting for 36 hours, having needles pierce both my ear drums to syringe out the fluid which had accumulated on my brain and for four days straight.
Over the past 8 years I have absorbed the crackhead comments, online ridicule; being turned down for a dish washing job at Johnson and Sons Oyster House in Toronto; the deliberate coordinated effort by persons within the Canadian soccer media to ridicule, defame, slander my life story, myself as a person, and my health as a means to prevent me gaining any soccer media employment into the future; received a text message stating, note to self: never hire a crackhead from a parent who was aggrieved his son wasn't playing enough; turned down by a technical director of a local soccer job to coach a boys U15 team where the parents wanted me as their coach because as he stated “I’m a bad person that wouldn't pass a police check”. I had never met or conversed with this person.
I have taken York University, the HRTO and McCarthy Tetrault over 5 years to two levels of the Supreme Court of Canada on a claim which the organizations know down to the minutiae of case law, I am right. It is why McCarthy Tetrault removed their lawyer after the Divisional Court of Ontario hearing in 2015 and have taken such great lengths to “destroy/assassinate” me as a self-represented applicant and as a person including through the media outlets of the National Post and CBC who in the latter instant the President hails from McCarthy Tetrault. And the list could on and on as to why I have reached the point of a fourth hunger strike protest. As one former national soccer player I coached stated to me, “your decision is rational, I would do the same thing.”
Yet I never wanted to harm or expose anyone from York University or anywhere else. Nor did I not want to expose myself or my family to such humiliation. I have tried on numerous occasions to meet with the institution to resolve this matter over the past five years most significant of which was in May 2012 through a pro- bono lawyer. I am to this day aghast and outraged at the path York University decided to embark on at that time which was immoral and ethically wrong which subjected myself and others to considerable pain. At the time of my filing a human rights application to the HRTO York University were honouring the brilliant Clara Hughes with an honorary PHD for her humanitarian efforts on speaking openly about poor mental health. The hypocrisy, through no fault of Ms. Clara Hughes, could not have reached deeper.
York University’s strategy back in 2012 centred around the one year time limitation for filing a human rights discrimination claim as queried by Justice Sachs at the Divisional Court of Ontario. It is harmful destructive systemic barrier preventing fair access to social justice which York University through “controlling the judicial process” and deceit took advantage of. York University knew they had made egregious errors in my regard. However, I was not viewed as the person anymore who was the architect of the York University soccer programs unprecedented success, or a former Canadian international soccer player and coach who contributed much to York University. I was instead, a self-represented, poor, “drug addict” who would never see his way through to the Supreme Court of Canada.
I have lost 8 years of my life and who knows how many more due to the internal damage the stress has caused. My beautiful former partner, a graduate of York, even lost her hair through the stress of our circumstances. It was the worst moment amongst many we have been through including the complete destruction of our condominium and the subsequent abhorrent behaviour of a lawyer from McCarthy Tetrault which meant we lost our home. The Canadian judicial system needs some serious serious reform as it really does kill people either literally or through obliterated opportunities for the victim moving forward.
My ability to Hunger strike while more painful than anything I have encountered through my life is a display of my character to never accept such injustice and abuse. I am on hunger strike because of the injustice I have faced from York University and the relentless willingness of the Canadian Judicial system at all costs to not deliver warranted justice to the point it will now cost another Canadian his life.
We seemingly have not evolved from 2010 when former Minister of Health and Welfare Monique Begin stated, “Adding social sciences evidence, we now have accumulated indisputable evidence that social injustice is killing people on a grand scale”. In 2008 I was an average Canadian citizen functioning successfully as a normal person with a mental disability. I have not harmed anyone in my life rather I have helped and assisted many including giving my heart and soul to Canadian soccer, to the Canadian Soccer Association, to York University and to Canadian Inter-university Sport (CIS).
In my time of greatest need these organizations along with the Canadian mental health care system, the Canadian judiciary and Canada as a whole have brutally turned their back. Canada is not the nation I thought. We are a stigmatized, illiterate, “machiavellian” nation when it comes to substance addictions, politics of mental health and avoiding responsibility when errors occur or errors are made. It has been reflective of York University’s approach throughout this matter.
In a civilized advanced progressive secure society you do not treat any human being in the way I and many other Canadians with similar circumstances have been treated over many years.
As Dr. Rogan Taylor from the University of Liverpool commented a few years back in regards to my circumstances, “what kind of society do you live in over there that permits this to happen?
I request justice in order that the public false narrative on my life, my human rights discrimination claim, and my health condition can be corrected allowing me to live a normal life again so that no other Canadian citizen has to experience the recurring nightmare I and those closest to me have been living.
I therefore respectfully request to you, Mr Justin Trudeau, as the Honourable Prime Minister of Canada along with your Canadian government and Canadian Parliament to intervene in the Paul James matter to get to the truth and permit justice to be delivered 8 years after injustice first took place.
And in doing so I request to the Canadian government and parliament that the only reasonable, fair way for the Canadian Public and I as a Canadian citizen to be assured the Canadian Judicial system has adjudicated and judged my human rights discrimination claim and myself as a person equally and fairly and with dignity and respect is for the Canadian government to:
• Facilitate through the Supreme Court of Canada’s Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin for the honourable court to correct the “mistakes” that have been made in denying Paul James access to social justice permitting amendment to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to explicitly communicate that substance use disorders are disabilities requiring protection under section 15 of the Canadian Charter.
• Investigate the Paul James matter through the Ministry of Health
• Investigate the Paul James matter through the Ministry of Sport
• Investigate the Paul James matter through the Ministry of Justice
• Investigate the York University Board of Governors and Chair Rick Waugh on their handling of the health and well being of Paul James from 2008 through the Canadian Judicial process to the present day.
The right, just, moral decision by the Canadian government, the Canadian parliament and Supreme Court of Canada will permit millions of Canadians to live less stigmatized lives because of their poor mental health in the form of substance use disorders through protection under section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. And all Canadians will benefit economically, socially, and morally.
A fumbled decision will be a humiliating indictment of Canada as a nation, on a moral decision the country got wrong leaving another Canadian to die and an awkward unnecessary question mark on an otherwise impeccable legacy of the Honourable Chief Justice of our Supreme Court of Canada Ms. Beverly McLachlin.
Without communication from you Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, then on July 1st, 2017, I will, very regrettably transition onto a Total Starvation Hunger Strike protest in isolation.
Yours respectfully, Paul James
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