CPJ and TrustLaw: Know your rights guide for journalists in Canada

CPJ Emergencies has been responding to the needs of journalists in Canada as they confront a range of challenges, from protests and demonstrations to police confrontations, and learn to navigate what has unfortunately been for many journalists an increasingly hostile environment.  

This guide covers legal rights journalists have, and risks they may face, when covering protests in Canada. Canada has strong laws protecting journalists as part of the constitutional right to freedom of expression, including the right to gather news. Law enforcement officers are broadly aware of these rights, but may not always observe them to the fullest in every scenario.

In a protest, it is generally recommended that you comply with directions from police to prevent escalation and to ensure your safety. Unlawful state conduct can be challenged later in court. Your safety is always the priority.

The guide is also available in French.