Brian Coldin, the operator of a nudist resort in Bracebridge, Ontario, has challenged the country’s public nudity law in court. He claimed in a case before an Ontario court that Canada’s public nudity laws are too broad and unconstitutional.
Coldin was charged with public nudity after he entered the Ontario outlets of Tim Hortons in 2008 and driving through A&W stores in 2009 without clothes.
Workers at the two dining establishments said the sight of Coldin’s genitals made them uncomfortable.
Nader Hasan, Coldin’s lawyer, will argue on Tuesday that the country’s criminal laws were not aimed to protect the prudish.
Hasan pointed out that innocent acts of nudity – such as sunbathing naked in a backyard or changing clothes at a swimming pool – are punished under current laws.
Hasan conceded that seeing naked bodies may embarrass or make other people uncomfortable, but he stressed there is no evidence that exposure to nude bodies would cause enduring psychiatric harm to people.
Hasan said the public nudity law should only apply if it could be proven that actual harm was caused by the sight of a naked body.
Ontario lawyers pushed for a dismissal of the constitutional challenge. They said that while Coldin is free to strut naked in his private property or a naturist resort, he is not free to do it in public places where people have not been forewarned of his clothesless state or he has not secured their permission to see him au naturel.
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