Civil liberties association sues Canadian government over Sidewalk Labs’ Toronto smart city

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) is suing Waterfront Toronto and the federal, provincial and municipal governments over the quayside smart city project in the Canadian city being developed by Sidewalk Labs, owned by Google parent company, Alphabet.

At a press conference, Michael Bryant, CCLA executive director and general counsel, said that Waterfront Toronto and the three levels of government had “sold out” citizens’ constitutional rights to freedom from surveillance “to the global surveillance mammoth of behavioural data collection, Google”.

He said: “The Google-Waterfront Toronto deal is invalid and needs to be reset. “These agreements are contrary to administrative and constitutional law, and set a terrible precedent for the rest of this country. Unlawful surveillance is wrong whether done by data profiteers or the state. We all deserve better from our federal, provincial and municipal governments,” said Bryant.