Regulate CCTV cameras on private property, Cornwall councilman proposes

Cornwall Coun. Todd Bennett, seen here in a February 2020 file photo, proposes the city regulate where people point their home security cameras. Bennett wants to eliminate the possibility of a 'gross violation of privacy.' (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

CORNWALL – A local councilman believes the City of Cornwall should be regulating where people are pointing their closed circuit security cameras (CCTV) on their own property.

Coun. Todd Bennett will ask for a report on creating a municipal law (bylaw) to “protect the right of our residents from the improper use of surveillance equipment” and infringing on neighbourhood privacy.

In his new business motion, Bennett claims “there are instances” of people deliberately pointing their cameras into a neighbour’s property “for harassment purposes and taking away the enjoyment of one’s own personal space.”

Bennett says the Criminal Code of Canada doesn’t cover this so people have to seek relief through small claims court. He feels the City of Cornwall should step in and help through regulation.

Bennett’s new business motion, supported by Coun. Dean Hollingsworth, will be discussed on Monday (May 10) at 7 p.m.

He would like to see the new bylaw up for council’s review on June 28.