Monday, March 17, 2008

Freedom to Read Award Winner

Author Derek Finkle has received the Freedom to Read Award for 2008. He has been honoured by the Writers' Union of Canada for defending writers' rights. In his book, No Claim to Mercy, Finkle raised questions about the conviction of Robert Baltovich, who was found guilty of murdering his girlfriend Elizabeth Bain. When a new trial was ordered for Baltovich, Finkle's research into the book was subpoenaed by the Ontario Crown. Finkle, supported by five writer's organizations, successfully challenged the subpoena.
Stated Susan Swan, chair of the Writers' Union,
Derek Finkle showed considerable courage and determination in standing up to the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General and all its resources. Had the Crown succeeded in obtaining that material, it would have cast a chill on writers who are determined to unearth wrongful convictions in the justice system.

Each year, during Canada's Freedom to Read Week, the Union presents its Freedom to Read Award to an individual who has publicly defended freedom to read in this country.

Take the "Banned Book Challenge" which began during Freedom to Read Week and runs until June 30, 2008.

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