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Online harms protection bill ready to be introduced

Federal legislation aimed at child safety and image sharing coming Feb. 26

The federal government is expected to introduce legislation against online harms today, which the Liberals have promised will tackle issues such as online child endangerment and non-consensual sharing of intimate images.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said last week his government’s upcoming bill will focus on making the internet safer for minors, while not censoring it for the rest of Canadians.

Trudeau first promised the measure during the 2019 federal election campaign, but a bill targeting online hate speech died on the order paper when he triggered an early election in 2021.

He then promised to retable the bill within the first 100 days of his new mandate, but failed to do so.

The legislation is expected to pave the way for a new ombudsperson to field public concerns about online content, as well as a new regulatory role that would oversee the conduct of internet platforms.

Justice Minister Arif Virani is set to hold a news conference this afternoon on the bill.

READ ALSO: Child safety, not censorship, the focus of online harms bill: Trudeau