Sociology expert Dr. Michael Ornstein is scheduled to be cross-examined at the Ottawa Taxi trial January 24th.
Ornstein, who submitted his report on the ethnic composition of Ottawa’s Taxi industry on June 17, 2019, provided testimony based upon it on January 20th. During that testimony, in which he stated that 9 out of 10 Ottawa Taxi plate holders are not born in Canada and that Arabs make up 53 per cent of industry members, Ornstein noted that “There are not a lot of Scottish or French Taxi drivers.”
Members of Ottawa’s taxi industry launched the $215 million class-action lawsuit in April 2016, alleging the city did not protect drivers and the industry when Uber and other private transportation companies arrived in the capital. The suit also claims the City discriminated against minority taxi plate holders by failing to enforce its own bylaw and changing the bylaw to allow Uber to operate.
A key element of this trial is the allegation that the City of Ottawa “in failing to enforce its By-law and in changing the By-law, the City discriminated on the basis of race, colour, ancestry, ethnic or national origin, religion or creed, language, place of origin, or citizenship, contrary to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Ontario Human Rights Code,” according to the class action.