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HRM to Appeal Award of Legal Fees
(Wednesday, June 30, 2004)-- Upon receiving legal counsel on the awarding of Mr. Kirk Johnson's legal fees, Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) has elected to appeal the award.
Based on the legal opinion provided, HRM believes that Professor Girard erred in law when awarding costs. There is no provision under the Human Rights Act empowering him to do so.
It is HRM's belief that the issue of awarding legal costs cannot be isolated to this specific complaint as it may be precedent-setting for future Human Rights cases. Given that it is believed Professor Girard erred in law, HRM must protect the interests of all taxpayers and appeal this award. The only issue HRM is appealing is the payment of legal fees.
This action should in no way be interpreted as a further slight to Mr. Johnson. The Human Rights Hearing Decision and the awarding of legal costs are two separate issues. With respect to the Human Rights Hearing Decision, an apology has already been issued and the damages paid. Halifax Regional Police (HRP) has begun implementing Professor Girard's recommendations and is currently in the process of selecting consultants to conduct a Police Anti-Racism Education and Diversity Training Needs Assessment.
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Acting Corporate Communications Officer
Tel: (902) 490-6531