Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Auditor General Report on Library and Archives Canada

Federal Auditor General Michael Ferguson released his Fall 2014 report Tuesday which includes a critical audit of activities at Library and Archives Canada.

Among the findings:
  • Library and Archives Canada is not acquiring all the archival records it should from federal institutions. It does not have up-to-date disposition authorities—that specify which records should be transferred and by what date—for all federal institutions. At the time of the audit, only 30 of 195 institutions had renewed their disposition authorities since 2009. Disposition authorities specify which records can be disposed of when no longer needed and which records must be transferred to Library and Archives Canada at the end of their retention periods. Each institution must have all records from its program activities covered under disposition authorities  to ensure that the government’s documentary heritage is not lost or destroyed
  • Of those records it had acquired, Library and Archives Canada had a backlog of some 98,000 boxes of government archival records as of April 2014, and does not know when it will be able to complete the processing of these records and facilitate public access to them
  • Library and Archives Canada states in its operational planning documents that digital records will represent the 'format of choice' by 2017. Therefore, when federal institutions create records digitally, they must transfer the records to Library and Archives Canada in a digital format at the end of the records’ retention periods. Library and Archives Canada does not have a corporate digital strategy for the preservation of digital data. In addition, despite having spent $15.4 million on developing and implementing a trusted digital repository from 2006 to 2011, the institution still did not have an integrated system to manage the electronic transfer, preservation, and storage of digital information, and provide digital access to its collection by Canadians
  • The trusted digital repository was shut down in November 2012 without documentation from management on the rationale for the decision. Officials at Library and Archives Canada explained that the institution had changed its approach from a custom-developed solution and was planning to implement a hybrid approach, which would include a commercially available solution. Library and Archives Canada informed us that most of the hardware and software from the previous, unused system—valued at approximately $975,000—was repurposed for other projects and services
The audit includes recommendations as well as Library and Archive Canada's response to many of the findings.

For more coverage:

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Monday, November 24, 2014

Most Recent Issue of LawNow: Looking at Vulnerable Families

The most recent issue of LawNow is available online.

The magazine is published by the Centre for Public Legal Education Alberta.

The main section contains a number of features articles on vulnerable families.

There is also a special report on unpaid internships..

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Supreme Court of Canada Hearings Calendar for December 2014

The Supreme Court of Canada has published its calendar of appeal hearings for December 2014.

To find out more about any particular case, the Court's website has a section that allows users to find docket information, case summaries as well as factums from the parties. All you need to do is click on a case name.

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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Updated WIPO Study on Copyright Limitations and Exceptions for Libraries and Archives

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has updated a 2008 study of copyright exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives from 186 countries:
"This report offers a significant update and expansion of the 2008 study. First, the combined 2008 and 2014 studies offer analysis of the copyright laws from all but one of the WIPO member countries. Second, this 2014 project identifies countries that have revised their relevant statutes since completion of the 2008 report. These statutory revisions confirm an ongoing need for legal change and reveal specifically the relevant copyright issues on which lawmakers in diverse countries have taken legislative attention (...)"

"Library exceptions are clearly fundamental to the copyright law of most countries. Of the 186 member countries, only 33 were identified as having no copyright exception in their statutes. Thus, 153 of the countries have one or more statutes that constitute a “library exception” within the scope of this study. The statutory library exceptions primarily address issues such as reproduction of copyrighted works for private research and study, preservation and replacement of materials, and document supply and interlibrary lending. Some issues that were prevalent in the 2008 study have not appeared frequently in more recent statutes. For example, the 2008 study examined statutes governing copying machines at the library and limitations on liabilities for infringements. This 2014 update reveals that relatively few countries have taken up these issues in their recent legislation."

"Despite the trend toward inclusion of familiar subjects, the details of the copyright statutes can vary greatly from one country to the next. Moreover, when national statutes reach beyond familiar subjects, the developments stand out. Two such subjects were identified in the 2008 study and appear more often in this 2014 update. First, a growing number of countries have instituted a provision from a European Union directive regarding t he ability of libraries to make digital copies of works available for study at dedicated terminals on the library’s premises. That concept has been adopted by many E.U. countries, but it also has been implemented by some countries outside the E.U. Second , many countries have adopted statutes on anti-circumvention of technological measures, and the statutes now more regularly include exemptions for the benefit of libraries."

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Friday, November 21, 2014

Law Library of Congress Report on Right to Peaceful Assembly

The Law Library of Congress in Washington has released a new comparative report on the right to peaceful assembly in a number of countries
"Freedom of peaceful assembly is a recognized right under international human rights law. This report provides a comparative review of one aspect of this right: whether advance notification or authorization is required for a nassembly to take place under the law of France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The report also reviews the relevant case lawof the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR)."
"Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms protects the right to peacefully assembly, but that right is not absolute; state authorities are given “a margin of appreciation” and may impose certain restrictions on the exercise of this right,provided that such limitations are (a) prescribed by law; (b) necessary in a democratic society;and (c) in the interests of national security or public safety, for the prevention of disorder orcrime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms ofothers. Similarly, in the United States, restrictions related to time, manner, and place imposed bygovernment authorities can be justified as long as they are content-neutral, narrowly tailored to serve significant government interests, and leave other lines of communication open."
The Law Library of Congress is the world’s largest law library, with a collection of over 2.65 million volumes from all ages of history and virtually every jurisdiction in the world.

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Thursday, November 20, 2014

English Law Commission Report on Kidnapping and Child Abduction

The Law Commission of England has released a report on the Simplification of Criminal Law: Kidnapping and Related Offences:
"In line with the model favoured by consultees, we recommend the creation of two distinct statutory offences to replace the existing common law."

"We recommend that false imprisonment be replaced with a new statutory offence of unlawful detention (a label which we believe better captures the nature of the offence). The elements of the new offence would closely follow the existing common law."

"The new statutory kidnapping offence would be somewhat narrower and more focussed that the existing common law offence. Kidnapping would have fewer, more closely defined, elements and a clearer relationship with the offence of unlawful detention. The new kidnapping offence would be committed where a person, D:
  • without lawful authority or reasonable excuse;
  • intentionally uses force or the threat of force;
  • in order to take another person V, or otherwise cause them to move in his company."
The report also recommends reforms in relation to child abduction:
  • The seven-year maximum sentence for child abduction  should be increased to 14 years. 
  • The child abduction offence be extended to those cases where a child is lawfully removed from the UK, but then unlawfully retained abroad. 


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Law Reform Commission of Ireland Issues Paper on Cyber-Crime and Cyber-Bullying

The Law Reform Commission of Ireland has released a discussion paper ("issues paper") on Cyber-crime affecting personal safety, privacy and reputation including cyber-bullying:
"The criminal law is important in this area, particularly as a deterrent, but civil remedies, including 'take-down' orders, are also significant because victims of cyber-harassment need fast remedies once material has been posted online. The Commission seeks the views of interested parties on the following 5 issues. "

"1. Whether the harassment offence in section 10 of the Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person Act 1997 should be amended to incorporate a specific reference to cyber-harassment, including indirect cyber-harassment (...);
2. Whether there should be an offence that involves a single serious interference, through cyber technology, with another person’s privacy (...) ;
3. Whether current law on hate crime adequately addresses activity that uses cyber technology and social media (...) ;
4. Whether current penalties for offences which can apply to cyber-harassment and related behaviour are adequate (...) ;
5. The adequacy of civil law remedies to protect against cyber-harassment and to safeguard the right to privacy (...)"
There was a related Library Boy post on October 13, 2014 entitled Updated Library of Parliament Legislative Summary of Cyberbullying Bill.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

2015 NELLCO Symposium on Use of Statistics in Law Libraries

NELLCO, an international consortium of law libraries, will be holding a symposium in Boston, Massachusetts on March 19-20, 2015 on Quantifying Your Value: Using Data to Promote Your Worth in Your Organization and Beyond.

The two-day event will explore how law libraries collect and use data around reference, interlibrary loan, acquisitions and collection development.

The plenary speaker will be Sarah Ryan, Empirical Research Librarian at Yale. Her topic will be "Enhancing the Institutional Information Cycle: Better Library Administration through Better Study Design, Data Gathering, Analysis, and Presentation":
"Law libraries are increasingly incorporating data and statistics into their acquisitions, budgeting, and strategic planning processes. Local library analytics and survey results from local, consortium, and national sources should tell a story about what a library is doing, where it is heading, and how it stacks up against other libraries. But is that what’s really happening? Oftentimes, national surveys fail to measure what matters, and local data gathering efforts yield only snapshot information. Most of us agree that there’s room for improvement. This session will provide a crash course in applied empirical research, and will demonstrate that donning a ‘researcher hat’ can help library administrators better determine what data to collect, how to use it, and how to collectively fill gaps in regional and national statistics via collaboration with NELLCO colleagues. Topics covered will include: research goal-setting, hypothesis development, research question writing, significance and impact statement development, survey research methods, research writing, and more."
The Supreme Court of Canada Library, Dalhousie University Law Library, University of British Columbia Library, the University of Ottawa Library, the University of Victoria Law Library and York University Osgoode Hall Law School Library are Canadian members of NELLCO.

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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Canadian Library Association CLA Digest for November 2014

The Canadian Library Association (CLA) publishes a regular news bulletin known as CLA Digest.

In the most recent issue, there are a number of items that caught my interest:
  • Royal Society review highlights opportunities for CLA: "The Canadian Library Association (CLA) welcomes the report released today by the Expert Panel of the Royal Society of Canada. This report, The Future Now: Canada's Libraries, Archives, and Public Memory, acknowledges the important contributions that libraries and archives make to our communities and to our country while emphasizing the need for greater public awareness about the role of these institutions."
  • Now available: October 2014 issue of IFLA Journal: "IFLA Journal is an international journal publishing peer reviewed articles on library and information services and the social, political and economic issues that impact access to information through libraries."
  • Disability Awareness Training for Library Staff (Webinar, Thursday, November 27, 2014): "Creating an attitude and atmosphere that values people with disabilities is foundational to creating an inclusive library. Two contemporary ways of looking at disability and their relationship to the work of library staff will be presented in this webinar. It is the integration of the principles and practices of these two models that supports library staff to create physical and cognitive accessibility, and to interact with patrons with disabilities in a supportive way. "

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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Quebec Legal Info Service CAIJ Adds Commentary From 6 More Law Firms

CAIJ, the Centre d'accès à l'information juridique (the network of courthouse law libraries associated with the Québec Bar Association), has signed resource sharing agreements with 6 major law firms in Québec that will make their legal commentary freely available on the CAIJ website.

The firms in question are:
  • Cain Lamarre Casgrain Wells 
  • De Grandpré Chait 
  • Langlois Kronström Desjardins 
  • McMillan 
  • Osler  
  • Robic
Their guides, bulletins and commentary articles will be added to a collection that already includes full-text commentary and textbooks including the Développements récents (annual reviews of areas of law), the Collection de droit (Bar School materials), proceedings of the annual Quebec Bar Association congresses, a growing number of treatises from publisher Wilson & Lafleur, numerous annotated acts, case law, and a list of thousands of legal questions with their corresponding answers.

There are now a total of 13 law firms that share material with CAIJ. Last June, CAIJ had added publications from the following 7 major firms:
  • Borden Ladner Gervais,
  • Dentons,
  • Fasken Martineau,
  • Lavery,
  • Miller Thomson,
  • Norton Rose Fullbright,
  • Stikeman Elliott
Readers may also be familiar with similar initiatives such as CanLII Connects that allows publishers, law firms and academics to share commentary on cases and legislation on the CanLII website funded by Canada’s provincial and territorial law societies.

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Ontario Legal Community Asks: Are Law Libraries Still Relevant?

According to a Law Times article this week entitled Are law libraries still relevant?, the Law Society of Upper Canada as well as LibraryCo., a non-profit entity that runs many of Ontario's law libraries locate in local courthouses, want to undertake a review of the system.
"The enhancements coming out of the review of the system will vary by jurisdiction, he [Joseph Neuberger, president of the Toronto Lawyers Association] notes."

" 'What Toronto-based lawyers may need at the 361 University [Ave.] law library is different than somebody who is practising possibly in Timmins. So we have to look at each jurisdiction and determine what are the specific needs that need to be served for the lawyers in that area'."

"As the review gets underway, there are already some ideas on what new components a revamped system could have."

"Connie Crosby, vice president of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries and a consultant in library management, says the upcoming review should consider incorporating practice management support for sole practitioners and smaller firms."

"Another growing area in which law librarians are providing assistance is competitive intelligence, according to Crosby. That involves monitoring competitors and industries to help law firms see what’s changing and where opportunities lie, she notes."

"Law libraries could also do more to help firms with information management as well as make sure lawyers are aware of all of the services they offer, she adds."
The last review took place 15 years ago.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:15 pm 0 comments links to this post

CLA Government Library Network Interview With Natural Resources Canada's Stephanie Glandon

For the past few months, the CLA Government Library and Information Management Professionals Network, part of the Canadian Library Association (CLA), has been publishing 13 Questions With..., a series on its website that profiles a member of the Canadian library and IM community every week.

This week's interview is with Stephanie Glandon, System Administrator and Technical Business Analyst, Natural Resources Canada. She works on the GCDOCS electronic documents and records management (EDRMS) project:
"How do you stay current in your field?
Network as much as possible, go to conferences, trade shows, and keep in touch with people I have met at them."
"What should every information professional know about working on EDRMS projects?
You can’t please everyone, everyone has an opinion, and some people love to waste time nit-picking at the smallest things."

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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Library of Parliament Legislative Summary of Justice for Animals in Service Act

The Library of Parliament recently published a legislative summary of Bill C-35, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (law enforcement animals, military animals and service animals) (short title: Justice for Animals in Service Act):
"Bill C-35 creates a new offence, criminalizing the act of killing or injuring a law enforcement animal, military animal or service animal."

"Currently, an offence is committed under sections 444 and 445 of the Criminal Code (Code) when someone wilfully kills, maims, wounds, poisons or injures cattle or when someone kills, maims, wounds, poisons or injures a domestic animal wilfully and without lawful excuse. Section 429(2) of the Code provides a defence, stating, 'No person shall be convicted of an offence under sections 430 to 446 where he proves that he acted with legal justification or excuse and with colour of right'."

"There are also a number of provisions that address cruelty to animals, including section 445.1 of the Code, which establishes that it is an offence to cause unnecessary suffering to an animal."
It is possible to follow the progress of the bill on the LEGISinfo website.

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Canadian Association of Law Libraries Funding to Attend Northern Exposure to Leadership Institute 2015

This is a follow-up to the October 28, 2014 Library Boy post Nominations Open for Northern Exposure to Leadership Institute 2015.

The Institute is an annual library leadership training program. The next one will be held in Emerald Lake, British Columbia, from March 29 to April 4, 2015.

The Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) is offering to sponsor one CALL member as a nominee to the Institute and is prepared to fund the registration fee and up to $1,000 in travel costs to that person if he or she is selected by the Institute.

Details and deadline information are available on the CALL website.

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Sunday, November 09, 2014

Canadian Association of Law Libraries Webinar on Relations With Legal Publishers

The Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) is organizing a webinar on November 26, 2014 called Everything you wanted to know about dealing with legal publishers... but were afraid to ask!:
"Join us for an interactive session about relations with vendors in today’s increasingly complex collection development world. Experienced private and law society collection managers from across the country will answer your questions and discuss their tips and tricks when working with legal publishers."
The speakers will be:
  • Melanie Hodges Neufeld - Director of Legal Resources, Law Society of Saskatchewan
  • Josette McEachern - Library Manager, Field Law - Edmonton
  • David Whelan - Manager, Legal Information, The Law Society of Upper Canada 
The webinar will take place from 1 to 2:30PM Eastern Time.

CALL/ACBD Member: $40 + $5.20 HST    = $45.20
 Non-member: $60 + $7.80 HST    = $67.80

It is possible to register online.

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Thursday, November 06, 2014

Information Management Results in the Canadian Government's 2013-14 Departmental Performance Reports

The CLA Government Library & IM Professionals Network, part of the Canadian Library Association, has compiled a list of information management related results contained in the Departmental Performance Reports (DPRs) for 92 government departments and agencies.

The DPRs for 92 federal departments and agencies, including the Supreme Court of Canada, were tabled this week in Parliament.

These annual Reports are part of the federal Estimates Process that includes government expenditure plans, the main and supplementary budget estimates, and Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPPs). Every year, federal departments and agencies publish RPPs outlining their strategic goals. At the end of the fiscal year, Departmental Performance Reports look back on actual accomplishments and expenditures, to assess how well the agencies performed as measured against the objectives that were set out in the RPPs.



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Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Law Libraries Accept the SRL Challenge

The blog of the National Self-Represented Litigants Project run by the University of Windsor Faculty of Law has a recent guest post on the role law libraries can play to help self-represented litigants.

It is written by Annette Demers, Acting Law Librarian and Sessional Lecturer, University of Windsor, Melanie Hodges Neufeld, Director of Legal Resources, Law Society of Saskatchewan, and Dale Barrie, Information, Research and Training Services (IRTS) Manager, Alberta Law Libraries. Demers is also the current President of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries:
"Much effort is required in order to ensure that SRLs and the larger public understand that the law library is a resource available to them. Through partnerships with other public service providers such as public libraries, Legal Guidance or other pro bono agencies, the law library will benefit through increased exposure, and SRLs will ultimately benefit by learning how to access a significant resource that is freely available to them."

"Integration with other court service providers and general awareness raising campaigns will help to ensure that proper referrals are made, and that SRLs can be provided with the option of accessing information resources that may prove to be very useful to them.   Additional partnerships may also be pursued to more efficiently deliver legal information to SRLs. In Saskatchewan, the Law Society Library has been exploring options for a more coordinated approach with several other legal information providers." 
"The law library must also continue to increase its role in the development and provision of information available online via library and court websites."
"By employing best practices in website design and usability, using plain-language approaches in developing public legal education and information tools, and by engaging people in multiple places and in multiple formats, the law library will increasingly be seen as a destination for anyone with a legal information need."

"An important challenge for the legal profession is building public awareness about the variety of tools available to SRLs, including law librarians and the services and materials that they provide."
Earlier Library Boy posts on the National Self-Represented Litigants Project include:

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Monday, November 03, 2014

Victims Bill of Rights On-line Consultations Summary Report

In the most recent Weekly Checklist of federal government publications,  there is a link to a Justice Canada report on recent consultations on a proposed Victims Bill of Rights:
"On February 4, 2013, the Minister of Justice announced the Government of Canada’s intention to enhance the rights of victims by bringing forward legislation to create a Victims Bill of Rights (VBR). In order to inform the development of this legislation, the Government launched a public on-line consultation on May 1st, 2013, to seek the views of various stakeholders within the criminal justice system, members of the civil society and the general public. The on-line consultation closed on September 27th, 2013 (...)"

"A total of 319 submissions from a variety of stakeholders, including victims of crime, victim advocacy organizations, provincial and territorial officials or organizations, criminal justice associations, and criminal justice system stakeholders were received (...)"

"There are several considerations to keep in mind when reviewing the summary of submissions. First, victim legislation, victim services, and the role of victims in the criminal justice system are grounded in a complex legal system and constitutional framework that many may not fully understand or may have misconceptions about; these misconceptions may have guided some responses. Secondly, many respondents expressed the firm view that the system does not need to be altered, advocating instead for the status quo. Finally, victimization is an inherently emotional and often traumatic experience, and many of the submissions shared by victims of crime reflected the impact of the experience on their personal lives."
A Victims Bill of Rights Act was introduced in the House of Commons earlier this year. It is possible to follow the progress of the bill, read MPs' interventions in the parliamentary debates, and find background material in the LEGISinfo website.

The Weekly Checklist includes a listing of titles made available by the Parliament of Canada, federal departments, and Statistics Canada to the Depository Services Program for distribution to a network of Depository Libraries in Canada and abroad.

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November 2014 Issue of In Session: Canadian Association of Law Libraries' e-Newsletter

The November 2014 issue of In Session is available online.

It is the monthly e-newsletter of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) and contains news from CALL committees and special interest groups, member updates and events.

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Saturday, November 01, 2014

2013-14 Annual Report on Federal Privacy Act

Federal Privacy Commissioner Daniel Therrien tabled his annual report on the Privacy Act in Parliament this week.

The Privacy Act sets out the rules for privacy protection in the federal public sector.

Among the highlights of the report:
  • there are many shortcomings in how the Royal Canadian Mounted Police monitors and reports on its collection of subscriber data from telecommunications companies without a warrant
  • it includes a technical and legal primer on metadata – the data trail generated each time someone uses a mobile device, computer, telephone or other technologies.
  • it offers details on privacy aspects of U.S.-Canada border security initiatives
  • the number of data breaches voluntarily reported by federal institutions reached a record high.  It is unclear whether there were actually more breaches or whether more departments and agencies chose to report them
  • the document also summarizes the complaints under the Privacy Act handled by the Office

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