Ontario justice system failed the victims of the deadly Radiohead stage collapse, says OFL

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) is raising serious concerns over the staying of charges in the deadly stage collapse at the Downsview Radiohead concert.

“We are shocked and saddened with the decision to stay the charges,” said Chris Buckley, President of the Ontario Federation of Labour.

“Our judicial system failed the family of Scott Johnson, the worker who was killed and the three workers who were injured,” added Buckley.

A total of 13 charges were laid in 2013 under the Occupational Health and Safety Act following the collapse of the outdoor structure which came crashing down in 2012 killing one worker and injuring three others.

A mistrial was declared earlier this summer when the presiding judge was appointed to the Ontario Superior Court and no longer had jurisdiction to hear the case.

“This is a serious flaw in our judicial system and one that the government needs to address quickly,” Buckley said. “How many cases get declared a mistrial when a judge gets a new appointment?”

It’s been just over four years since the original charges were laid, long past the 18-month time limit for provincial cases to go to trial which was set by the Supreme Court of Canada. This resulted in the stay of charges in this case.

“Justice delayed is justice denied, our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those workers killed and injured. Those workers that survived, their families, and the family of Scott Johnson are today no closer to knowing why this tragedy occurred. That’s an injustice that must be righted,” said Buckley.

The OFL represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. For more information, visit www.OFL.ca and follow @OFLabour on Facebook and Twitter.


For further information contact:
Rob Halpin, Executive Director
Ontario Federation of Labour
rhalpin@ofl.ca l 416 707 9014