LEGAL VICTORY: Saskatchewan music venue “not guilty” of breaking social distancing laws

Legendary Saskatoon bar exonerated at trial.

SASKATOON: Buds on Broadway, Saskatoon’s oldest live music venue, was found not guilty of having breached a Public Health Order after TDF-funded lawyer Luke Coupal of Caritas Law successfully argued that there was insufficient evidence for a conviction. The family business was facing a fine of up to $14,000 on allegations that it did not maintain social distancing requirements in January 2021.

The business was charged with breaching the public health order despite the owners taking precautions to comply with the law. In addition to removing chairs, closing off tables, and operating at a reduced capacity, the business owners would cooperate with health inspectors whenever they attended the establishment. Then one day, they were charged without notice and without being given an opportunity to remedy the alleged breach.

The owners of the bar, who all attended yesterday’s trial, are not bitter about the treatment they received. “We are just grateful for the way it turned out,” says Joan Rejzek, one of the owners. In a conversation with TDF, Ms. Rejzek conveyed her thanks to TDF donors who made this victory possible.

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About The Democracy Fund:

Founded in 2021, The Democracy Fund (TDF) is a Canadian charity dedicated to constitutional rights, advancing education and relieving poverty. TDF promotes constitutional rights through litigation and public education. TDF supports an access to justice initiative for Canadians whose civil liberties have been infringed by government lockdowns and other public policy responses to the pandemic.