Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Evaluation Report on Cameras in Ontario Courtrooms

Yesterday on, Simon Fodden reported on a 2007 evaluation on the use of video cameras in Ontario’s Court of Appeal.

Canadian Press reporter Allison Jones has provided with a copy of the evaluation report obtained through a freedom of information request.

From the summary of findings:
  • According to 20 out of 21 people (95%) interviewed and surveyed, the CCAPP [Camera in the Court of Appeal Pilot Project] enhanced openness and access to courtroom proceedings for the public and the media;
  • According to all 21 people interviewed and surveyed, and 80% of 854 Court of Appeal web survey respondents, the CCAPP promoted education and public information regarding Ontario’s justice system directly through its webcast; the CCAPP also enhanced and supported education for the legal profession;
  • Following the launch of the pilot, it received no media coverage;
  • Little media­-coverage was given to appeal cases covered by the CCAPP, with the exception of the Mullins-Johnson case. This is related to the lack of newsworthiness of the civil cases that the remainder of CCAPP coverage comprised;
  • All those interviewed and surveyed showed great support for the CCAPP and recommended that cameras should continue in Ontario Courts, with the majority being in favour of expansion to other Courts;
  • All those interviewed and surveyed agreed that there are potential negatives to the use of cameras in the courtroom that should be a considered further if a courtroom camera program is to be introduced into Ontario Courts;
  • The webcast was readily accessible and easy to use, but since few DVDs were ordered and the audio box was put to little use, there is less evidence regarding these services

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 7:11 pm


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