Wouldn’t it be great if the free and seamless trade of Canadian products between borders was a reality? What if producers could sell alcohol directly to consumers, including restaurants and retailers?
Gérard Comeau is single-handedly fighting for this very outcome. He stood up to the New Brunswick government after they stopped him at the provincial border and seized the beer he’d bought legally in Quebec.
Now his case is headed to the Supreme Court of Canada on Dec. 7, 2017.
The Supreme Court will decide whether the so-called free-trade clause in our Constitution means that laws restricting the transport and sale of alcohol across provincial lines are unconstitutional.
If the Supreme Court agrees with the New Brunswick court that heard Mr. Comeau’s case, it will be the biggest victory for Canadian businesses and consumers in a century.
Any decision in favour of freer trade within Canada would be good news, but a full victory would strike down all restrictions on the free and seamless trade of Canadian products within the country.
This would allow the sale of alcohol directly between producers and consumers, including restaurants and retailers. The Constitutional text makes no distinction between personal and commercial transport and sale.
What can you do to help Gérard Comeau?
Comeau needs the resources to present the best possible case to the Supreme Court. He’ll come up against the unlimited resources of the provinces and federal government.
David can beat Goliath, and Comeau can beat the government – but not without resources.
To help Comeau, please give as generously as you can to his legal costs via the CCF at http://www.freeourbooze.ca/. Because the CCF is a registered charity, donations are eligible for tax receipts.
And because there’s strength in numbers, tell your colleagues, customers, friends and neighbours how important this historic case is for them as consumers, producers or businesses. Share this article or http://www.freeourbooze.ca/ on your social media channels. Let’s get the word out!
Howard Anglin is the Executive Director of the Canadian Constitution Foundation, Canada’s leading defender of constitutional rights and freedoms, which has been supporting Mr Comeau’s case since 2014.