Respecting Private Property Rights

Imagine if your bank called you tomorrow to say your property had lost 90% of its value? Well that happened to a hard-working family from my riding. The cause? A municipality redefined their property as “protected lands”, which means they can’t build, farm or basically use their land for anything. Sadly, this is happening all too frequently across Canada.

We don’t need empty promises like changing our Constitution; Left-leaning provincial governments would never support it. What is needed is a plan to restore property rights protection in Canada, so that families and businesses can have the confidence they need to prosper and grow.

With your support, as Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and your next Prime Minister, I will introduce a range of policies that make sense, and return personal property to the hard-working families of Canada.

Erin O’Toole, P.C., C.D., M.P.

Erin O’Toole Policy on Property Rights

The right to own property and enjoy its use is one of the core freedoms upon which our civilization is built. Yet, in Canada, courts and governments have chipped away at this freedom, too often taking it away entirely.

Private property rights in Canada have been eroded by left-leaning, activist governments at all levels, and by quasi-government entities that the courts have repeatedly sanctioned for exceeding the scope of their mandate. Just in my riding of Durham, a hard-working family helplessly watched as the value of their property dropped by over 90%. Across major cities in Ontario we have buildings that sit in disrepair and pose a danger to surrounding families, all because regulations make needed repairs and renovations too costly.

It’s time for a government that respects the fundamental right of Canadians to manage their own property and to be compensated for any government taking of that property.

An O’Toole Government will:

  • Respect the private property of Canadians by requiring a warrant before any federal official, inspector, or law enforcement officer can enter a piece of property, except in case of emergency.
    • We will narrow the Criminal Code definition of “exigent circumstances” in which police can enter private property without a warrant.
  • Reform civil asset forfeiture by requiring a conviction before property can be seized.
  • Protect Canadians from losing their property through land claims.
    • If as a result of a land claim, any property owner loses the ownership or use of his or her land, or if access to their property becomes restricted, the government will pay full, fair, and timely compensation and ensure that the existing owner retains a life estate in the property. After all, claims are against the Crown, not against innocent property owners.
    • Never again can we tolerate a situation like Caledonia, where Canadians were forced from their homes and had to live in fear when the police pulled out.
  • Appoint a Special Counsel for Property Rights protections to operate within the Department of Justice with responsibility for identifying, analyzing, avoiding or mitigating any proposed federal legislation, program or policy that might negatively impact property rights in Canada.
  • If any existing or new federal legislation, program or policy does injuriously affect private property use or value, this loss will be fairly assessed by an independent tribunal and compensated by the federal government, AND the program or policy will be reviewed and amended or eliminated to minimize adverse impacts on the private property rights of Canadians.


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