Eye on the Trials

The creation of the Smokers' Freedom Society

Documents produced during the trial of the Blais/CQCT and Letourneau class actions in Montreal, 2012


Timeline of documents related to Smokers' Freedom Society

(Documents in shaded boxes come from sources outside the Blais/Letourneau trials).





479 K

Canadian tobacco companies want to create a smokers’ rights group.

Minutes of a meeting of the Public Affairs Committee held in Montreal on November 7, 1984

C. von Maerestetten referred to earlier discussions on the advisability of forming a Canadian ‘FOREST’ group. It was proposed that C. von Maerestetten and M. Descoteaux be entrusted with the responsibility as a sub-committee to survey the proposal and sub it their recommendations at a future meeting of the P.A.C.


479 L

In order to forestall public smoking bans, the CTMC increases its interest in a smokers’ rights group.

 Summary of a special meeting held in Montreal on December 11, 1984 to discuss the results of the Public Opinion Survey and their implications


The manufacturers' position on public smoking is, at best, a compromise. We provide scientific information because no one in the scientificcommunity will: we have adopted apublic philosophical1political posture because no  “civil rights" group will. However, experience has shown that we can't successfully argue loss of jobs  in this debate nor should we be the ones flogging courtesy/consideration. I

The notion that second-hand smoke is injurious to health has a very broad constituency, even among smokers. …

Possible Action

Actively pursue the idea of a Canadian "FOREST"


479 M

The CTMC looks at a specific proposal for a smokers’ rights group – and agrees to bankroll a visit by the head of the UK group, FOREST, Stephen Eyres.


There is unanimity on the usefulness of a Canadian version of FOREST. A plan will be submitted in a separate document. It is attached as appendix "B".

(From Appendix B)..

The PAC of the CTMC believes that a Canadian equivalent of FOREST might be an important asset in the promotion of the social acceptability of smoking.

One way to test certain basic hypotheses about the potential of a

Canadian equivalent of FOREST would be to have FOREST director Stephen Eyres tour Canada's major cities and expose his views to the media. This would allow an evaluation of the reaction of the media, government officials and of the public, and to identify individuals who might be interested in founding a Canadian FOREST….

One way to test certain basic hypotheses about the potential of a Canadian equivalent of FOREST would be to have FOREST director Stephen Eyres tour Canada's major cities and expose his views to the media. This would allow an evaluation of the reaction of the media, government officials and of the public, and to identify individuals who might be interested in founding a Canadian FOREST.

The PAC recommends that this further research step be taken and that a sum of $12-15, 000 be earmarked for that purpose.


516 B

The Canadian tour of FOREST leader, Stephen Eyres, is planned

Re: Minutes of a regular meeting of the Public Affairs Committee held on Thursday, April 25, 1985 in Montreal

02. News Business:

J. LaRiviere reported on a letter received by C. von Maerestetten from Ms. Pat Delbridge offering a program called "Connectives", a consulting service in the area of pressure group behaviour. It was agreed to invite Ms. Delbridge to make a presentation to the Committee at its next meeting.


J. LaRiviere reported on the meeting he had in London with Stephen Eyres concerning the possibility of a media tour in Canada to explain the role of FOREST. Mr. Eyres had indicated an interest and has now informed J. LaRiviere that his Board of Directors has approved such a tour, in principle. Among the dates suggested, late October has been retained as being the most convenient and effective. The logistic arrangements for the tour will have to be handled by an independent P. R. consulting agency. The selection of the agency will have to be made among agencies that do not handle any tobacco accounts. Two names were suggested: Continental Public Relations and Marshall Fenn. J. LaRiviere will investigate further and report.


479 N

A successful tour by Stephen Eyres of FOREST increases confidence at the CTMC in the idea of a Canadian smokers’ rights association

CTMC PAC minutes

07. Stephen Eyres/Tour

Stephen Eyres reported on his 18 day 10 city tour of Canada. He was involved in 52 interviews (16 Press, 10 TV and 26 Radio). He indicated that, in most cases, the interviews were easy going, only two proved to be difficult. The main issues raised were passive smoking and social costs.

He is of the opinion that there is a market for the establishment of a freedom of choice organization in Canada, providing that the right people to launch it are found. He expressed general satisfaction with the way his Canadian tour went.



Senior corporate leaders are kept up to date on plans for a smokers’ rights organization

CTMC briefing note (prepared by David Allnut) is sent to company presidents.

The smokers' rights group idea is still being pursued, following the two week visit of Stephen Eyres to Canada last month. Eyres, by the way, found Canadians tame for the most part, and the non-argumentative approach of most of the journalists who interviewed him allowed him to get his points across. Final reports from him and from the public relations agency that organized and followed his tour are expected soon. It appears most media coverage was electronic and not print.


479 O

Imperial Tobacco continues to take the lead in the recruitment of a head for a Smokers Rights association

CTMC PAC minutes

06. Smokers' League

M. Descoteaux reported on meetings held with persons interested in launching such a Smokers' League. Developments are expected in a few weeks.


479 P

A candidate is short-listed….

Minutes of a special meeting of the public affairs committee held on Tuesday, February 4, 1986 in Toronto

Smokers' League

M. Descoteaux-brought the meeting up to date on the development of this project. We are waiting for some concrete proposals from a candidate who seems to be very interested.


1999 R (reserved)

Michel Bédard submits a proposal for a Smokers’ Rights association

Proposal submitted by Michel Bédard



Bédard is introduced to other companies.

Rothmans president PJ Fennell writes to ITL Chariman JL Mercier to say that his company likes Michel Bédard.

Dear Mr. Mercier:

Our people in Quebec met with Mr. Bedard and were impressed with his qualifications and apparent commitment to the project in hand. I want to reconfirm our commitment to the smoker's rights concept and specifically to Mr. Bedard. I appreciate the work that you and others did in locating Mr. Bedard.

I look forward to our next meeting.



Michel Bédard reports that the paperwork to set up an association is almost complete…

Michel Bédard writes to the presidents of the 4 tobacco companies and the CTMC to report progress.


This is to follow up on meetings that I had with your representatives, Jacques laRiviere, and the letter of April 9, 1986 I received from Mr. Denis Sauvé with the accompanying documents “memorandum of agreement and guarantee” and the “addendum”.

I have the pleasure to tell you that the steps are underway to establish a nonprofit corporation under the name of Association pour la liberté des fumeurs – Smokers Freedom Society (ALF – SFA).

Given that the payment of $50,000 of the $300,000 is to be provided by June 1, 1986, we should meet as soon as possible ….

[he supplies agenda for meeting]



The decision on what to call the organization is discussed at the CTMC Board of Directors meeting.

 Minutes - CTMC Board of Directors

A brief discussion was held on the name Smokers' Freedom Society. The Public Affairs Committee is directed to take a second look at the name


479 Q

The paperwork has been submitted for federal incorporation.

Re: Minutes of a regular meeting of the Public Affairs Committee held in Montreal on Thursday, May 29, 1986

05. Smokers' League

J. LaRiviere reported that the Smokers Freedom Society was awaiting its federal letters patent and was looking for an opportunity to launch the movement early.

C. von Maerestetten and J. Clavel reported on conversations they had with people who have launched a Smokers Rights Protection Association to combat Bill 84 in Quebec.



Federal incorporation of the Smokers Freedom Society

Under the name of:




The companies agree to provide $300,000 each to support the new agency.

Agreement of Support with Smokers Freedom Society and CTMC and the 4 companies

The companies agree to collectively contribute $300,000 in the first year.  A $50,000 advance will be paid in June 1, 1986, and the balance in five payments of $50,000 on the 1 of the months of September, occtober, November, December 1986 and January 1987.



A separate agreement is reached to guarantee severance to Michel Bédard if required.

Addendum to the Support Agreement – Five year severance agreement with Michel Bédard

A secondary agreement provided a payment to Michel Bédard should the companies pull out their financial support. If it happens in year one or two (86-87 or 87-88), the payment is $200,000, in year three (88-89) it is $125,000, in year four (89-90) it is $90,000, in year five (90-91) it is $60,000.

In subsequent years, a budget must be proposed to the CTMC.



A press event is planned to launch the new society.

Jacques LaRiviere sends each company president a copy of the “press kit” in advance of the conference lauching the Smokers Freedom Socoiety.  .



The companies are given some speaking notes for the launch.

Suggested speaking notes to tobacco companies with respect to the founding of the Smokers Freedom Society

If the five of us (members + CTMC) are asked about it, we would recommend that we adopt the following attitude in response to media questionsr

1. Yes, we were aware of Mr. Bédard's project.

2. Yes/No - I have /have never met Mr. Bédard

3. Yes, Mr. Bedard bas asked us and others in the industry, for financial support. We responded favorably.

I4. Yes, we do consider it normal and logical to contribute to such a movement. Isn't it logical and predictable that a smokers'. movement should look for support to the organizations that grow, manufacture, distribute and sell tobacco?

Mr. Bedard has made it very clear to us that, unlike some ·anti-smoking organlzations who seek and get smoking and non-smoking taxpayers' money from the federal government, be won't do that.

5. Yes, we agree that there is a constituency for his movement. The phone calls and letters that we get from smokers who want to be put in touch with the nearest smokers' association has increased considerably in the last few months.

6.There are 6.8 million smokers in Canada, .according to the most recent survey by Health & Welfare Canada.

7. No, we're not prepared to say how much we have contributed. It's up to Mr. Bedard to disclose his organization's funding.



The Smokers’ Freedom Society is launched – less than 2  years after the companies began planning one.

Press release announcing the formation of the Smokers’ Freedom Society.

Montreal, September 3, 1986 -Freedom to smoke, with respect for others· is the motto of the Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS), an organization which has just been established to defend and promote the responsible freedom to smoke. In announcing the foundation of the SFS, Michel Bédard, the founder-President, highlighted one of the Society's priorities: the recruitment of supporters, both smokers and nonsmokers, from every background, who favour free choice with regard to smoking. Mr. Bédard is also Director of the magazine L'Analyste whose editorial policy is to protect and promote personal freedoms.

The press release invites people to join ($2 annual basic contribution), but makes no mention of industry financing


(from database)

214 A

The new Society explains its role – and downplays health risks.

Smokers Freedom “Rationale”   (8 page document)

Smoking and smokers' health

Depending on their genetic baggage, their past, their physical constitution, their lifestyle, their field of operation and their tobacco usage, smokers may be exposed to smaller or greater risks.

If suppressing the risks implies suppressing freedoms, there is reason to act with caution. The sacrifice of freedoms cannot be accepted unthinkingly, especially when no certainty exists that such a sacrifice will remove the dangers it seeks to eliminate. The experienced physician examines the concept of pathogenesis with great care. Pathogenic causes involve several factors and it is the result of their many interactions and of the individual's internal disposition which lie at the root of an illness, rather than a single cause.

Several famous smokers used tobacco continuously throughout their lives, and death spared them until they reached their 80s or 90s. Although well identified and isolated, external pathogenic causes most often take effect only if the organism is receptive. Of some seven million Canadian smokers, the vast majority dies of causes other than smoking. In any event, it is difficult to precisely evaluate the effect of smoking as one of many causes of heart disease and chronic pulmonary ailments which contribute to deaths occurring during retirement, for example. Assuming that these causes include smoking, they would also encompass air, water and food pollution, eating habits, emotional disturbances o'f a family nature, alcoholism, the quality of life at work, inadequate oxygenation, etc. Besides, no study has proved to~ date that smoking has caused actual dependence. …



Media reports underestimate tobacco industry financial support.

Toronto Star article on Smokers Freedom Society mentions $100,000 of revenue “received” from tobacco companies, but not of the future revenues that were scheduled to be received.

MONTREAL (CP) The formation of a smokers' rights lobby, financed mainly by Canada's tobacco industry, was announced yesterday.

Michel Bedard, president of the Smokers' Freedom Society, said his group had received $100, 000 from Canada's four largest tobacco companies, its unions and tobacco growers and wholesalers.

But Bedard angrily denied his group was a front for the industry. "We are not here to protect the companies but to protect the liberty of smokers, " Bedard told reporters.

"The protection of non-smokers has hurt the freedom of smokers, " said Bedard, a pack-a-day smoker of cigarillos.

"Smoking has become equivalent to an anti-social act, " Bedard said his group, like FOREST, the British smokers' organization on which it is based, will aim to "restore the respectability of smoking" through a publicity drive.

Garfield Mahood, executive director of the Non-Smokers' Rights Association, said the overwhelming body of medical evidence supports the notion that inhaling other people's smoke is dangerous.

In a telephone interview from Toronto, Mahood accused Bedard and the tobacco industry of spreading false information. "The people involved in this, because of their source of financial backing, are perpetrating the fraud that direct and involuntary smoke inhalation is not a health hazard, " Mahood said.

Bedard said the four companies—Imperial Tobacco Ltd. , Rothman's of Pall Mall Canada ltd.  and Benson and Hedges (Canada)  Inc. "have agreed to give us the funds to start. "

Spokesmen from Imperial Tobacco and Benson and Hedges confirmed they had made a contribution to the society. Officials from RJR-MacDonald and Rothman's could not be reached for comment.


479 R

The tobacco companies will try to generate memberships for the Society from their employees.

Minutes of a regular meeting of the CTMC Public Affairs Committee

04. Smokers Freedom Society (SFS)

The Committee noted the exposure given to the launching of the SFS in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver. The four manufacturing companies will bring to the attention of their employees the existence of the SFS and distribute application forms. Mr. Bedard of the SFS has informed Mr. LaRiviere that similar steps are being taken by the NATCD. who have also offered to contact the retailers, and by the growers.

Mr. Bedard has also asked the CTMC for a list of the manufacturers' principal suppliers. The four companies agreed to send a list to Mr. LaRiviere who will combine it into one for·Mr. Bedard.

The Committee agreed to continue its policy of exclusive support -for the SFS until further notice.



The creation of the Smokers Freedom Society is reported by RJ Reynolds

Also in Canada the Smokers Freedom Society has been launched . The four companies will bring its existence to the attention of their employees . Similar steps are being taken by the NATCD, who have also offered to contact the retailers, and by the growers .



200 A

Michel Bédard seeks direction from the CTMC

Smokers Freedom Society Meeting With CTMC Public Affairs Committee.

2- Extend of the activities of SFS

After a successful national launching, SFS has to make a choice: whether to cover the entire country or to restrict its activities. The first hypothesis raises cost and staff problems, etc: but in return, plays in favor of the wishes expressed by several members to launch sections of SFS in their own region (Vancouver, Halifax, etc).

The second hypothesis, that SFS tends to favor so far, has the advantage of concentration (i.e. Ontario/Quebec - Quebec/Montreal/Ottawa/Toronto: in return, members in the other provinces will feel neglected and among those, we find some of the most motivated. Another aspect: in concentration, aimed at increased efficiency, the Toronto region, as an example, would require a local organization.

What are the views of the Council and its members on this question?

3- Strategy for national non-smoking week

In order to obtain the maximum visibility and impact on the occasion of non-smoking week, what should the SFS do?

To only answer questions that are sure to come? Take steps to create one or two high impact events? If so, what could they be? One constraint, keep costs to a strict minimum.



479 S

The Society reports on its initial struggles – including problems generating members.

Minutes of the CTMC Public Affairs Committee

07. Smokers Freedom Society

M. Bedard distributed a document outlining some of his organization's concerns. On recruitment of members, it was suggested that a meeting be arranged with the NATCD in order to identify further ways and means of getting the help of retailers to recruit more members from the general public



Philip Morris takes credit for tour of Stephen Eyres

In Canada, we orchestrated a national media tour by the U .K .leader of the Freedom Organization for the Right to Enjoy Smoking Tobacco (FOREST), which generated a large amount of favourable media coverage and led to the creation of a Canadian counterpart, Smokers Freedom Society.




Smokers Freedom Society enrolment form.





Smokers’ Freedom Society issues public statement on “Tobacco, drugs and advertising”

Tobacco, drugs and advertising

The federal government is about to ban all advertising for tobacco products. In so doing, it would remove the right to information to which tobacco consumers are entitled in the same way as consumers of any other legally-sold products.

If such a law had been in effect when plain·cigarettes were smoked, smokers would have had no means by which to learn of filter-tipped cigarettes. Experience has shown this in other countries in a conclusive fashion.

.In order to assume responsibility for thus encroaching on the rights of smokers, the government claims, among other things, "that advertising encourages young people to smoke. However, there has never been any advertising for marijuana, hash, cocaine or for many other drugs widely used by young people… So the argument cited is not valid.

Should this law be passed, a dangerous precedent would be created. After consumers of tobacco products, who would be the next to be affected? Consumers of alcohol? And then?

The Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS) strongly protests against this law which removes freedom of access to information, a freedom which should be enjoyed by all consumers.

Michel Bedard



The SFS’s newsletter echos industry positions on health.

Calumet – winter 1986-87 (English)


The SFS already has over 5,500 supporters

Freedom of Choice

Notice Board

Encouragement to lie

Passive smoking in the office: myth and reality

Scientific research challenge severything

Lung cancer and the nonsmoker



The Smokers Freedom Society reports on its media activities.

List of interviews given by Smokers Freedom Society during January – February 1987



The Smokers' Freedom Society Half-yearly report (56 pages)

A very detailed report covering activities, evaluation of the situation, recruitment, upcoming SG report, resourcing, recommendations.



Canadian Facts provides a report of a survey among employers and employees in Toronto.

Toronto City Council is exploring the idea of whether or not it should direct its attentions to the possibility of introducing smoking regulations in the workplace . In light of this, the Smokers' Freedom Society commissioned Canadian Facts to conduct a survey to determine the probable response of those directly concerned,both employers and employees, to such an intervention on the part of Toronto City Council, as well as to determine satisfaction with the status quo .




433 A

The CTMC continues to ponder how to increase membership in the Smokers’ Freedom Society.

Minutes of the CTMC Directors Meeting. May 29, 1987

Business arising from previous minutes:

The following items from the previous minutes are deferred until the next Directors' meeting: (O5-b) Means to increase membership of Smokers' Freedom Society •

The incoming CTMC president wants to meet with Bédard:

Mr. Fennell confirmed that he will assume the.Chairmanship of the C.T.M.C. on September 1st., 1987 and that he will speak at the annual meeting of the N.A.T.C.D.

Smokers' Freedom Society

The half yearly report of the S.F.S. was distributed. Messrs Hoult and Fennell wish to meet with Mr. Bedard during the week of June 1.



The Smokers Freedom Society works with the US Tobacco Institute and RJ Reynolds to conduct a study of air quality in Ottawa offices.

Letter from M. Bédard to W. Kloepfer of the Tobacco Institute

Thank you very much for your letter of last August 11. In fact, the SFS has requested the I .T . Corporation to conduct some studies on the air quality in Ottawa . We will be most happy to make the results of these studies available to you .

In return, and as you yourself wrote, it would certainly be very useful for the Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS) to be made aware of the results of studies which you, for your part, are undertaking in the same field .

I have no doubt that this exchange of friendly services will be of mutual benefit to us



The air quality study is elaborately planned.

Air quality studies conducted for Smokers Freedom Society are managed by U.S. companies (especially RJR), connecting this initiative with the ETS strategies of the U.S. companies.

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/jmv66b00

In order to provide information to Canadian legislators as they consider a bill to restrict smoking in federally administered buildings, the Smokers' Freedom Society sponsored an ETS survey in offices located in Ontario, Canada . On 8/6, Dr . G . B . Oldaker of RJRT met with representatives of Government Consultants International to review the status of GCI's efforts in locating representative sites . Sampling was done by IT Corporation with the PASS during the week of 8/24 . Results show that occupants' exposure to ETS is very low . These results are consistent with earlier values from surveys performed in Winston-Salem, Dallas, and New York City . Since results were submitted by IT Corporation on 9/28, efforts have focused on 1) locating a person qualified and willing to speak on the health implications and 2) developing a strategy for releasing the findings to the news media . It was expected that the results would be presented to the Canadian Parliament and news media during the week of 1/17 . Dr. D . J . Ecobicon, a qualified, Canadian scientist on the faculty of McGill University, will speak on the health issues .

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/kft31d00

Final report. Environmental Tobacco Smoke Survey. Submitted to Smoker’s Freedom Society by IT Corporation.




Statement by Mr. John Carson,  Air Quality Services Project Manager International Technology Corporation

It would take from 26 to 1000 or more hours to be exposed to the equivalent of one cigarette in the offices sursveyed; the average was 156 hours, about four 40-hour weeks, at nicotine levels measured.

·   http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/vlh54b00

Press release:  Smoking restrictions scientifically  unjustified.

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/dmh54b00


·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/gmh54b00


·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/gwe04d00

Memo outlining financial arrangements (June 12, 1987)

Drafts of the aboveand raw data are available at:

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/ift31d00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/hca87c00 

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/jft31d00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/gca87c00

·  raw data: http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/mft31d00

·  raw data: http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/nft31d00

·  raw data: http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/nft31d00

·  note on sampling problems. http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/skt88e00

·  planning meeting  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/yhz23d00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/wlr74d00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/yrp01e00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/xhz23d00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/zrp01e00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/wrn74d00

·  http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/nkc97c00


215 A

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Automne 1987  Vol. 1 No. 4  (French version)

Headlines  (translated)

Anti-tobacco campaigns don’t improve air quality on airplanes

When anti-tobacco fanatics put health care at risk

Ban on smoking on flights under 2 hours after December 1987

Air pollutin: twice as dangerous as second hand smoke

Tempest in a air duct

Firing on smokers

SFS doubts that government has proof about risks of second hand smoke.



Michel Bédard supports tobacco industry positions before parliament.

Michel Bédard appears before the legislative committee looking at C-204 (Non Smokers Health Act), objecting to the bill




Michel Béard appears before the legislative committee looking at C-204 and C-51 to make additional comments.



215 B

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Vol. 2. No. 1.  Winter 1988 – (English Version)


Tobacco smoke  unfairly blamed

Double standards

The spider plan makes an excellent air purifier

Anti-smoking. A religion which persecutes nonbelievers

Legislation which flaunts common sense:



Society reports to CTMC on its media activities against tobacco legislation.

 Letter from Michel Bédard to Michel Descoteaux accompanying report on media coverage for SFS.



Smokers Freedom Society Media Coverage report – Articles on C-51 (29 pages)



Society provides members with smoking-promotional material.

Letter to Smokers Freedom Society members

At the start of the New Year, the Smokers Freedom Society (SFS) would like to offer all its supporters a calendar featuring twelve caricatures of famous smokers. Month after month, you will rediscover such personalities as Prime Minister Louis Stephen Saint-Laurent,, famous actor Orson Welles, Coco Channel, the Queen of Fashion, and several other renowned celebrities.

In addition, following many requests, we have issued the smoker commandments in the form of .a small: poster, also enclosed. These commandments were first published in the third number of the SFS newsletter, Calumet, and elicited several comments testifying to the courtesy usually shown by smokers.

Finally, you will find enclosed a plastic card for use as a measure of your stress level. You will certainly have fun showing it to your friends, especially when the rights of some people versus those of others are debated and the discussion becomes somewhat more lively than usual!

The SFS wishes all its supporters a most fulfilling 1988.

Letter: http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/umh54b00

Calendar: http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/zmh54b00



Smokers Freedom Society releases reports on Ottawa air quality study



CTMC plans strategy for Smokers Freedom Society

Note from Descoteaux concerning CTMC Public Affairs Committee.

1.        Issues

Smokers' Freedom Society is one area that was identified as being the responsibility of the Committee.  Needless to say, since many of its activities have repercussions and implications on the ETS issue; the Committee will make sure that any communications with the SFS will take place within the context of the strategic decisions arrived at in the ETS Committee. I will serve as the communications link with Michel Bedard; …

2.       Short term activities…

-consult with the SFS to determine whether, how and when to along a legal action against federal Treasury Board regulations concerning smoking in federal workplaces. Legal opinion sought by the SFS will be available any moment now, and will be reviewed by the Legal Committee. The PAC to make the appropriate recommendations, including cost estimates~ as soon as possible;

- consult with the SFS to determine the appropriateness of the establishment of an SFS presence in Toronto. After discussions with M. Bedard, the PAC is of the opinion that this would be a positive development, in principle. No commitment has been made yet, however, and the PAC will report back to the CTMC in the near future;

- discuss further the question of the level of the membership of the SFS. In the immediate future, PAC members have agreed to launch in their respective companies, intense efforts, in cooperation with the union, to ensure as high a level of renewal as is possible. Further moves, if appropriate, to be recommended by the PAC at a later date

-help carry out to conclusion the SFS briefcase exper1lnent. Jeff Labow~of R:R. has agreed to llaise directly with SFS on this matter and to report back to the PAC.



The Society looks to expand and open up a Toronto office.

Costs for opening an Smokers Freedom Society office in Toronto and operating expenses for the first year



Imperial Tobacco tries to “grow” the SFS.

Michel Descoteaux (ITL) writes Jacques LaRiviere (CMTC) about The Smokers Freedom Society and proposes an increase in its budget.  The language and budget are very similar to that in a memo from the Jacques LaRiviere to company presidents later that month. (Exhibit 252)

As we are preparing our blue print for the future in the ETS area, it is appropriate that we ask ourselves: why a SFS, what can it do and to what extent should we support it? The following are my personal observations on the matter.

This is where the SFS is essential. It constitutes a "morale" supporter to those who enjoy smoking. It is a small voice that, in the middle of the thunderous cacophony of the antis's condemnations and pressure, maintains that it is o.k. to enjoy smoking, that smokers are not social lepers, that smokers do not kill innocent bystanders with their smoke, that they pay their way in terms of health costs, that they have rights too.

The SFS is a supporter that is more credible than we are ourselves, for our motives will always be suspect. After all, we do have a commercial interest in the matter. And while many smokers would indeed welcome our direct involvement in public smoking issues, there will always be many that will view it with cynicism and resent it.


479 V

The CTMC receives a proposal for a strengthened Smokers’ Freedom Society

Minutes of a meeting of the Public Affairs Committee May 6, 1988


There was a lengthy discussion of the proposed budget for the opening of a Toronto office of the SFS, of the proposed general budget for 1988-89 (excluding a Toronto office) and of the "membership" situation of the SFS. Michel Bédard made an informal presentation and responded to questions and comments.

The Committee gave conditional approval to the SFS budgetary proposals, subject to a full review of the SFS role by the ETS Task Force.

Mr. Bédard informed the committee that he wants to prepare a response to the Surgeon-Generalis forthcoming (June) report on "nicotine addiction". He was asked to develop the project and to discuss it with the Committee Chaiman. "

The Committee recommended that the CTMC develop a response to the forthcoming report on addiction.



CTMC head Bill Neville writes the company presidents about concerns with the Smokers Freedom Society  (5 pages)

I think we all are agreed that we are fast reaching the point where some fundamental decisions are required on the future of the Smokers Freedom society.

It is a significant item on the agenda for our June 8th meeting in Ottawa with both the Public Affairs Committee and ETS Task Force committed to submitting reports and recommendations to you at that time on SFS's role as they see it.

Given the strategic importance of the issue, I thought I also should record my personal views with you directly as part of your file for that discussion.

The SFS, now in its second full year of operation, could be described as firmly established in a maintenance mode.

It is both timely and necessary, in my view, to squarely face these realities and to make some basic decisions about SFS and its future.

Of the various options available, the status quo seems, in many respects, the least attractive. The current budget of $450,000 represents a significant financial commitment, but frankly not enough to move the SFS beyond its present status.

Absent more resources and a more aggressive program, there is a growing danger that harassed consumers are going to give up on a Society which "really doesn't do anything to help us". I sense, too, that Bedard shares that kind of frustration and probably will not continue much longer in the present environment.

Frankly, if we do not see a more Substantive role for SFS and thus an enlarged support commitment on our part, I probably would recommend allowing the organization to run down and reinvest the current budget in other programs (e.g. advocacy advertising) to reach smokers and other sympathizers.




The US Surgeon General concludes that tobacco products are addictive.




Jacques LaRiviere writes the presidents of the 3 tobacco companies a memo to propose increased funding for the Smokers Freedom Society

As the movement towards making smoking socially unacceptable increases in intensity, we can expect that many smokers will find fewer and fewer opportunities to smoke and that many simply will decide that the pleasure they derive from the product is not worth the hassle, and will quit.

This is where the SFS is essential. It constitutes a "morale" builder for those who enjoy smoking. It is a small voice that, in the middle of the thunderous cacophony of the antis' condemnations and pressure, maintains that it is o.k. to enjoy smoking, that smokers are not social lepers, that smokers do not kill innocent bystanders with their smoke, that they pay their way in terms of health costs, that they have rights too.

The SFS is a supporter that is more credible than we are ourselves, for our motives will always be suspect. After all, we do have a commercial interest in the matter. And while many smokers would indeed welcome our direct involvement in public smoking issues, there will always be many that will view it with cynicism and resent it.

It can serve as the voice of the smokers with the media, by way of press statements, participation in open line shows, radio and tv debates, etc., to publicly denounce abuses that smoker are subjected to (in fiscal, regulatory terms, etc.) and propose more reasonable alternatives

it can serve as the voice of smokers with regulators of all types, offering information, opinions, facts, analysis, etc. in public debates surrounding smoking issues (e.g. C-51 and C-204 legislative committee, city of Montreal study group, etc.);

it can serve as a source for the generation of new knowledge, on a national or local scale (e.g. briefcase study(ies), public opinion polling, etc.);

it can serve as a supporter, financially and otherwise, of smokers challenging before the courts some of the extreme forms of regulations or legislation, and make the best p.r. use of these cases to make its points;

it can serve as the voice of smokers through advertising campaigns, the distribution of a variety of promotional materials such as calendars, stickers, etc.



Results of the Ottawa air study commissioned by Smokers Freedom Society (but managed by RJR) are published in the scientific journal Environmental Toxicology Letters.




Smokers Freedom Society tries persuade Senate to hold hearings on tobacco legislation (which would stall it in a pre-election period)

Michel Bédard writes to Senator Tremblay regarding C-51 and C-204 (which was before the senat at that time).

He asks for the Senate to hold hearings on the two bills. 



A possible challenge to the ban on smoking in federal work places is considered – but the legal advice received by the Smokers Freedom Society is subjected to review by outside counsel for Imperial Tobacco

Michel Bédard receives a further legal opinion from Denis Sauvé and Pierre Deschamps regarding the ban on smoking in federal work places. (7 letter opinion, written in French)

(Translation).  We have recently been able to reflect on the criticisms of S Potter and G. Thibodeau regarding the opinion which we submitted …



Bédard writes Descoteaux (as CTMC PAC president) regarding legal feedback on opinions on ban on smoking in federal workplaces (Exhibit 224).



An international industry-wide meeting notes that Smokers Freedom Society is part of Canadian industry initiatives to forestall bans on smoking.


Mr . Dunn reported that 85-90% of Canadians, smokers and non-smokers, are j against smoking regulation . As a result, the CTMC has set the following priorities : (1) to underwrite the Smokers' Freedom Society, a group that publicly represents smokers' interests and is separate from the tobacco industry ; (2) to develop. labor group defenses to smoking regulations ; (3) to address amendments to the Canadian Labor Code ; (4) to provide informational materials for private employers; and (5) to develop and strengthen the "Indoor Air Quality Center. "



215 C

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet.  Vol. 2. No. 4.  Autumn 1988 (English)


Minister Jake Epp doesn’t like scientific studies which contradict his own.

Smoking banned on Air Canada flights but PCBs are transported

The secret of long life: baseball, tobacco and drink

Smokers denounced although tobacco smoke pollution is negligible

American smokers form an alliance to protect their rights.

Off the job, bosses should mind their own business

The Human Rights commission and smokers’ rights.

Professor outraged.


479 W

CTMC takes notes of developments at the Smokers Freedom Society

Minutes of a meeting of the Public Affairs Committee held August 18, 1988



A report from Mr. Bédard on a possible legal challenge to the Toronto by-law is pending. He is currently interviewing potential plaintiffs.

The creation of a Toronto branch of the SFS is on hold, pending further consideration by the Board in September


Exploratory discussions have been on the program of the City Hall Committee. The MTL Committee is interested in receiving a collection of balanced materials on smoking policy. It was agreed that it be proposed to the Board that funding be made available to the SFS to conduct an opinion poll in Montreal.

M. Descoteaux indicated that further meetings regarding the MTL situation will be held during the week of September 12.


479 X

CTMC takes notes of developments at the Smokers Freedom Society

MINUTES of a meeting of the Public Affairs committee held in Montreal on Thursday, October 13, 1988.

6. Smokers Freedom Society

a) Toronto

Michel Bédard has received approval to proceed with his challenge of the Toronto by-law. He now has three plaintiffs who are prepared to support the case which will focus on the individuals and the Cit of Toronto by-law rather than on their particular employers. The  scheduled court date is December 23rd. Michel Bédard is now discussing his communication plan with the lawyers involved in the case.

It was agreed that Q&A sheet should be made available to handle possible media inquiries related to the challenge.

Approval was also given to establish a Toronto chapter of SFS. M. Bédard is working with a professional recruiting firm to find the right candidate to run the new office. Committee members were asked to send the names of possible candidates directly to M. Bédard.

B) Montreal

SFS has received approval to complete a public opinion poll for the Montreal region. M. Bédard is currently working on the questions for this survey.

C) Ottawa

SFS, with plaintiff Jourdain, is prepared to proceed with the Treasury Board challenge. However, as previously mentioned, there is some question as to whether C-204 supersedes the Treasury Board policy and therefore whether rthis challenge is appropriate at this time.



Smokers Freedom Society (SFS) -Annual Report – (98 pages)



Michel Bédard writes a letter to the Globe and Mail regarding nicotine and addiction

In an editorial published in your November 10 edition, entitiled 'For a stiff warning, you refer to the comparison made by the U ~ S. Surgeon General between the addictive power of nicotine and that of heroin. In so doing, you were helping to disseminate a perception which is far removed from reality.

In support of this is the statement made on radio station Europe 1 by Professor Albert Hirsch head of the anti-smoking campaign in France: ”One cannot class tobacco together with drugs, especially hard drugs like heroin and narcotics. It is always bad to fight a plague by putting forth untruths, caricature.”

In further comments on the position of' the U. S  Surgeon General on this matter, Professor H rsch added that if tobacco were a drug, it would completely change smokers' characters, which is not the case. Finally, he objected to the type of witch-hunt which is typical of some anti-smoking movements.



The first mandatory health warnings are criticized by the Smokers Freedom Society.

Smokers Freedom Society press release:  Government notices on cigarette packs should not lie to smokers

November 10, 1988.,  "T he Canadian government must resist the extremist pressure of anti-smoking groups. These groups want a notice to appear on cigarette packs stating that tobacco is the cause of lung cancer. Yet this is untrue, totally untrue” said Michel Bédard, President of the Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS).

"90% of smokers have never had lung cancer, declared the 5F5 spokesman, adding: "The government must not lie to Canadian smokers. Terrorism involving health is no better than other forms of terrorism. Health risks are one thing; the causes of sickness are another. More than anyone, the government should respect scientific accuracy and leave fanatic attitudes to others. "

The Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS) is a federally chartered nonprofit organization with over 8, 000 supporters throughout the country. Its ob)ective is to protect the responsible freedom to smoke.



Michel Bédard writes to Health Canada assistant deputy minister regarding proposed regulations. (5 page letter in French)


It is hoped for, if not necessary, for the warnings on advertisements and packages to be as scientifically valid as possible. Taking as an example from the many questionable proposals the suggestion that “smoking causes lung cancer” (Art 4(1) of the proposed regulation) does not seem to us to fit the facts. Even though lung cancer is more common among smokers than among non smokers, it is a fact that about 90% of smokers will never get lung cancer. ….



Bédard provides Health Canada’s person in charge of regulation (GE MacDonald) with a copy of his letter to ADM, Bert Liston (Exhibit 8A).



Smokers Freedom society supports a federal employer (Gilles Jourdain) in his challenge to a smoking ban. (media report)



479 Y

CTMC takes notes of developments at the Smokers Freedom Society

Re: Minutes  of the Tobacco Industry Coordinating Committee- December 14 Meeting 

02. C-204 update

Mr. Bedard reported that the Jourdain challenge of the Treasury Board's no-smoking policy "will be heard soon" according to Judge Teitelbaum. The challenge has received extensive coverage.

04. Toronto Bylaw

Mr. Bedard reported that the challenge of the Toronto Workplace Smoking Bylaw by Mr. Rigg and Ms. Haley is scheduled to be heard on December 23rd.


215 D

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Vol. 3. No. 1.  Winter 1989 – (English Version)


Resistance by smokers gets organized

Environmental smoke: a worrying situation

Air Canada reverses its decision and yields some ground to smokers

A Toronto auto shop boss opts for the smokers’ camp

The tale of Ms. Wisp and Mr. Perfume.

Don’t take away their only remaining pleasure from old smokers

Better to look like a pear than an egg.


60 A

The CTMC is not agreed on the value of the Smokers Freedom Society

RBH president PJ Fennell writes to ITL chairman JL Mercier regarding CTMC priorities, including the Smokers Freedom Society, He seeks a much narrower focus for CTMC activities.

Those areas which I do not feel are productive and should be dropped from CTHC management would be as follows:-

1) The Smokers Freedom Society. I have consistently expressed concern about the lack of effectiveness of this new body in its current form, and I am not optimistic that it can be significantly improved, even with an Ontario Chapter, under its current management.


479 HH

CTMC takes notes of developments at the Smokers Freedom Society

Highlights of a meeting of the Industry Coordinating Committee held in Toronto on January 25, 1989

Mr. Bédard indicated that he would be prepared to have his Ontario members write to Treasurer Nixon on the need for fairness in tobacco taxation.


215 E

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Vol. 3. No. 2.  Spring 1989 – (English Version)


Coalition denounces and condemns federal government discrimination against smokers

For the Canadian Human Rights Commission, could smokers be considered as handicapped?

An anonymous letter replaces "guts" for an anti-smoker

Why the Japanese are less susceptible to lung cancer than the Americans and the British

Sausalito: a cholesterol-free city

Bus drivers beware: lung cancer

Further taxes on tobacco products are misguided

Cigarettes as a mainstay?



Smokers Freedom Society applauds foreign carriers that continue to allow smoking on flights

Press release: No discrimination against smokers on Swissair flights 

Montreal, April 10, 1989 -- Unlike Air Canada and Canadian Alrlines, 5wissalr, the air carrier whose reputation is one of the best in the world, reserves about one third of its seats for passengers who smoke…..



215 F

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Vol. 3. No. 3.  Summer 1989 – (English Version)


Can tobacco and heroin be put in the same bag?

Not all companies ban smoking on

their aircraft

Tobacco has nothing to do with absenteeism

Anti-smokers go dangerously too far



CTMC head, Bill Neville, reports on its review of Smokers Freedom Society

Bill Neville sends company presidents a confidential “Aide memoire regarding Smokers' Freedom Society –“  (5 pages, including cover)

For its current fiscal year (ending August 31st), Smokers' Freedom Society has been funded by CTMC to the amount of $540,000. The grant supports a Montreal office, 6 small staff (President Michel Bedard and two support staff), a limited membership maintenance and communications program, and an advocacy program involving representations to government, media interviews, and support of legal challenges to some anti-smoking laws.

While the SFS has achieved a modestly heightened profile in recent months (e.g. in encouraging protests within the federal public service against a complete smoking ban), it remains essentially a "one-man band" and thus an organization with practical limits to growth in terms of potential further mobilization of smokers.

Acknowledging this reality, CTMC' s members asked that we consider potential further initiatives; to strengthen the consumer’s voice within the continuing debate over smoking and make recommendations for an enhanced action program in this area.

To that end, since the last Board meeting, we have:

1) received the input of a consultant (Burson Marsteller)with experience on both smoking-related issues and constituency mobilization;

2) sponsored a consumer research program to test smoker attitudes in Quebec and Ontario;

3) reviewed both the data and apparent options with the public affairs representatives of the member companies and with Michel Bédard.

The conclusions and recommendations set forth below reflect that process….

[recommends expanding Smokers Freedom Society and increasing its budget] …



CTMC head Bill Neville receives report on Society decisions.

Michel Bédard writes Bill Neville on a number of issues  “Re: Dr. Donald Whiteside - Dr. Dollard Cormier - Dr. Andre Raynauld”

Bédard is planning to hire Donald Whiteside as Ontario spokesperson

He has contacted Dr. Dollard Cormier who has agreed to cooperate “His positions are clear, well documented and very scientific: tobacco is not addictive”

He has met with Dr. Reynaud who has agreed to conduct a study  on “Taxes of Sin”,



Dollard Cormier identifies his opposition to a proposal label of addiction before the Royal Society review is underway.

Dr. Dollard Cormier writes Michel Bédard.  He is not able to make a presentation to the Royal Society in the time frame of its report, but is clear that nicotine is not addictive.

With a view to making a presentation to the Royal Society of Canada, this project seems so complex to me that it would be impossible for me to undertake a serious review of the subject and reach justified confusions within the time allocated to the Royal Society. A suitable extension would be required.

However, for me to talk of physical dependence in the case of tobacco is not only , scientifically unjustified, but also socially dangerous, as amply demonstrated by several studies, those of Warburton (1985, 1989), for example, which appeared, in the Bulletin of the British Psychological Society, or of Blau and Raffle in the personal briefs they presented before the sub Committee of the United States House of Representatives on Health and the Environment. In this respect and for several years, we seem to be caught in a spiral of bans which leads to the absurd and the suppression of democratic rights.

In the case of nicotine, the analogy with physical dependence on opiates is, to say the least, shaky, if not inappropriate and unproven scientifically. This same dependence applied to alcohol, has itself been dearly exaggerated when we consider that only 5% of problem drinkers show symptoms in any considerable way. Furthermore  problem drinkers themselves represent only 20% of the alcohol-consuming population (Cormier, 1989, AIcoonsme: abstinence, boire controlé, boire reflechi - Editions du Mandien,MontreaJ). As for nicotine, it requires deeper study and that, to my knowledge, has not yet been undertaken. The conclusions of the Surgeon General of the United States \ appear, for the moment at least, distinctly hasty since they are based on fragmentary ! observations •

As mentioned above, I am sorry not to be able to supply a study report although the question is one which concerns me greatly. 



Smokers Freedom Society advises head of Royal Society panel that Cormier thinks that the use of the word addiction is not justified with respect to tobacco use.

Michel Bédard writes Harold Kalant (chair of the Committee of Experts set up by the Royal Society to study evidence on nicotine dependency).

Dear Dr. Kalant

This letter is sent to you in your capacity as chairman of the committee of experts set up by the Royal Society of Canada to study. at the request of Health and Welfare Canada, the available evidence concerning what has been referred to as nicotine dependency. the objective of the exercise being to establish the most appropriate term to designate what some people have identified, at the outset, as being nicotine addiction.

For obvious reasons. the Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS) places great importance on the work of your committee and the report which it is to submit at the end of August.

The SFS therefore considered it wise to request Dr. Dollard Cormier for his advice. In 1969, Dr. Cormier founded the Laboratoire de recherches sur I'abus de I'alcool et des drogues [Research Laboratory into Alcohol and drug Abuse] (Universite de Montreal) and is still in charge of it.

In reply to the request we made to him. Dr. Cormier has informed us that the time frame hardly allows for an adequate study into such a complex matter. However,  he did not hesitate to affirm that ·speaking of physical dependence in the case of smoking is... scientifically unjustified· .

We are attaching a copy of his original reply as well as a translation of it…..



The Royal Society finishes its report on nicotine and addiction (80 pages)

A Committee Report Prepared at the request of the ROYAL SOCIETY OF CANADA
For The Health Protection Branch Health and Welfare Canada

Cigarette smoking can, and frequently does, meet all the criteria for the proposed definition of addiction:

(i) It is used regularly (usually many times a day) by the majority of users, and most of those who experiment with cigarette smoking become regular daily smokers.

(ii) The amounts and patterns of use by regular smokers are in most cases sufficient to maintain pharmacologically significant blood levels of nicotine throughout most of the day.

(iii) Such nicotine levels have been shown to produce a variety of effects on the brain, altering chemical and electrophysiological aspects of brain function, and producing subjective effects that the smoker recognizes, differentiates from those of other drugs, and usually finds pleasurable.

(iv) Sudden cessation of smoking gives rise to a withdrawal syndrome which can be alleviated by administration of nicotine. Other drugs that act on nicotine receptors in the brain also modify smoking patterns.

(v) In experimental studies, both laboratory animals and humans will expend considerable effort to self-inject nicotine intravenously in a manner similar to that shown in studies of heroin, cocaine, and other drugs that are generally regarded as addicting; i. e. , the effects of nicotine are clearly reinforcing.

(vi) Regular cigarette smokers have great difficulty giving up smoking, even when motivated to do so by the occurrence of respiratory, cardiovascular or other diseases caused or aggravated by smoking. Relapse rates among those who do stop smoking are high. The urge to smoke, among those who are also heavy users of alcohol or other drugs, is, in over 50% of cases, as strong as, or stronger than, the urge to use these other substances.

(vii) Although much less evidence is available concerning other forms of tobacco use, including cigars and pipes, snuffs, and chewing tobacco, they are capable of giving rise to plasma nicotine concentrations as high as, or higher than, those achieved by cigarette smokers, though somewhat more slowly. The risk of addiction to these forms of tobacco use therefore warrants further study.

The Committee therefore recommends that the patterns of cigarette use that meet the criteria set out above be regarded as nicotine addiction; that the term "dependence" be used only in specific senses indicated by appropriate modifying terms, rather than in a general sense identical to that of addiction; and that the terms "habit", "habit formation" and "habituation" not be employed at all in relation to the use of psychoactive substances.


(date questionable – Cormier report dated October 30 – see Exhibit 9A)


The Smokers Freedom Society scoops the Royal Society and distributes its criticisms of the report ahead of its release.


The Smokers' Freedom Society questions the scientific  value and intellectual approach of the Royal Society of Canada report titled "Tobacco, Nicotine, and Addiction, " which the Society is about to make public

Commissioned by the Canadian government at the end of June and submitted to the Minister of Health at the end of August, the report dealt in two months with a question that experts the world over have been debating for many years.

Not being a scientific body, the SFS asked for an analysis of the report by Dr. Dollard cormier, PhD, professor emeritus and head of the Université de Montreal’s Research laboratory on Alcohol and Drug Abuse.

His analysis is disturbing. “What you have here is politics, no science,” he writes, referring to some of the reports arguments. “The report may even discredit the Royal Society of Canada, raising questions about its credibility.” He concludes by saying that the Society should have refused, in the name of scientific prudence to  work within such time constraints.

The three attached documents are: the unpublished version of the Royal Society of Canada report, Dr. Cormier's analysis, and a summary of Dr. Cormier's report. Michel Bedard, president



CTMC reports to its international colleagues that the Smokers Freedom Society is a mouthpiece for the industry.

Bill Neville, head of CTMC, speaks to INFOTAB conference regarding public smoking in Canada.

We also have learned that, as opposed, for example, to the fight over tobacco advertising, this battle over public smoking is best led by others •— with the industry in a strong, if low-profile, supporting role. We have looked, first and foremost, to a group like the Smokers' Freedom Society to speak out for consumers and to other interested parties like employers* councils, trade unions


9 A

Dollard Cormier provides an analysis of the Royal Society report to the Smokers Freedom Society. (20 pages)


After formulating a critical analysis of the report from the Royal Society of Canada and restoring, in a limited way, the inherent complexities of addiction, particularly its human dimensions, it is our conclusion that the report is inconclusive, if not completely null and void. By resorting to unilateral reductionism and a completely biased line of argument in more than one instance, the committee confines addiction or dependence to its biological aspect only, thus making addiction inescapable, from its onset through its perpetuation, even if it very naively claims that very few people reach this stage and claims, against ail scientific expectations, that a small minority of cases is sufficient to prove the validity of the chosen position.

This view would imply that the only solution to addiction is abstinence which would bypass its physiological process and thereby avoid its harmful and undesirable effects - and ultimately prohibition as a final solution. This is a completely mechanical way of approaching a human phenomenon.

 People have the ability to choose. Based on the information at their disposal on their personal situations and their own self-knowledge, there are other possible solutions, including the option of making responsible use of the products in question.


215 G - e

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Vol. 3. No. 4.  December 1989 – (English Version)


SFS Ontario: Don Whiteside becomes co-ordinator

Medicine and propaganda. The other side of the coin

Guilles Jourdain: A matter of principle

Running for cover when controversy erupts


215 G-f

CALUMET VOLUME 3 NUMERO 4 (French Version)



Michel Bédard sends a copy of Dr. Cormier’s paper to members of the Royal Society.

Dear Mr. Denee,

At the end of last June, the federal government asked the Royal Society of Canada to prepare a report on tobacco and addiction by the end of August.

Within the prescribed time period, brief though It was, the Royal Society submitted to the proper authorities Its report, titled "Tobacco, Nicotine, and Addiction".

The Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS) Is obviously greatly Interested In such research.  That Is because, although the SFS encourages no one to smoke, neither does It attempt to dissuade anyone from doing so. Its sole purpose Is the safeguard of the responsible freedom to smoke - no more, no less.

The Smokers' freedom Society asked a recognized expert to evaluate the contents of the Royal Society report.

Dr. Dollard Cormier, Ph.D., an expert In the area and head of the Unlversité de Montreal Research laboratory on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, provided a professional opinion on the significance of the report the Royal Suciety submitted to the Government…..

You can judge for yourself the importance of Dr. Cormier’s assessment. …



Bédard sends federal Health Minister, Perrin Beatty, a copy of the Cormier report.

At the end of August 1999. you received a report on tobacco and addiction from the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) which was commissioned by your department.

The Smokers' Freedom Society. motivated by a profound Interest In such research. asked a well·known expert to analyse the RSC's report. This exert.  Dr. Dollard Cormier Ph.D., head a the Research Laboratory on Alcohol and Drug Abuse at the University of Montreal, then wrote an analysis of the report.

Dr.Ccormier's document raises questions of the utmost concern both with regard to the actual scientific quality of the RSC's report. as well as certain political repercussions which may be associated with this report.

In the light of Cr. Cormlers observations, the SFS has decided to write to the 1.244 members of the RSC. Each one of them will be receivIng a copy of Dr. Cormier's analysis, as well as a letter from myself…..



Jacques LaRiviere circulates the Cormier report to members of the CTMC Public Affairs Committee.

Attached are Michel Bt()UT()'S letter to PerrIn Beatty (delivered to Ills office yesterday) and his letter to the 1244 members of the Royal Society, mailed on Monday.

The SFS telephone is already ringing off the hook. The overwhelming majority of calls, so far. reflect great concern for the integrity ()C the Royal Society and suggest support for the Cormier position.

Given the tact that this is now very much "in the public domain", that the antis already have it in hand (dixit M. Bédard) and will want to counter, that the publication of the RSG Report is not scheduled until January and that he doesn't want to be reacting to 'their press conference", Michel Bedard is planning to release his material to the media (Parliamentary Press Gallery, etc.) early next week.

Bill Neville has sent you what he proposes to send to the Minister. We also will be ready to move sooner than next month, if we have to.




RBH public affairs head, Cynthia von Maerestetten writes her US colleague, Stephen Parrish, expressing reservations about Smokers Freedom Society engagement in addiction report.

By courier, I have sent you a report from the Royal Society of Canada which is expected to be released at a press conference in early January . It may not be the final report, but I doubt that much will have changed by the time it sees the light of day . In essence, a small, hand-picked group have re-defined the word "addiction ." and come to the pre-ordained conclusion that tobacco usage should be designated a drug addiction .

Also, under separate cover, is a report commissioned by the Smokers' Freedom Society (the Canadian FOREST). Lord only knows what that group is doing mucking around in this ….




The CTMC writes to Perrin Beatty regarding the Royal Society Report and cites, among other things, the Cormier study. (45 pages with attachments of Warburton articles and Liston memo)

As you may be aware, while it has not yet been formally released, the report of the committee of the Royal Society of Canada on "Tobacco, Nicotine and Addiction" was recently filed in a Montreal court.

Having obtained a copy of the report from that source and having now had an opportunity to study it, I thought it might be useful to file with you the comments of CTMC and its member companies before the matter is fully in the public domain.

We are deeply concerned with this report and take strenuous objection to it. …

. We also understand you have received from the Smokers Freedom Society a similar critique prepared independently by Dr. Dollard Cormier, Head of Research Laboratory on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Department of Psychology, University of Montreal.

Drs. Warburton and Cormier both are eminently qualified certainly as qualified as any member of the Royal Society panel to comment on the alleged "addictive" qualities of nicotine in tobacco and the quality and efficacy of research on the subject. Their commentaries speak for themselves. They not only reject the committee's conclusions, but they present criticisms of the methodology and data used by the committee which, in our view, are too fundamental to ignore.



Smokers Freedom Society Press Release:  nicotine and drug addiction. Royal Society Report Questionable.

The Smokers’ Freedom Society questions the scientific value and intellectual approach of the Royal Society of Cnada report titled “Tobacco, Nicotine and Addiction,” which the society is making public today.


479 Z

CTMC takes note of economic analysis commissioned by Smokers Freedom Society. 

Minutes of the Public Affairs Committeee – Thursday May 3, 1990
(Bédard has now left, and the head of the society is John Hutchinson)

SFS - Social Costs Study

John Hutchinson indicated that the Raynauld Social Costs Study is completed. He has asked Raynauld to write an executive summary. The report is scheduled for translation and should be finished in late June. J. Hutchinson is currently developing a communications plan -- aiming at distributing the report to eleCted officials, journalists, academics, etc., in the fall. The CTMC will supply its printing requirements and a suggested mailing list for INFOTAB, university/institutional libraries and government officials. J. Hutchinson will then prepare a project budget, separate from the main SFS financial request.

J. Hutchinson indicated that he is now officially "on board" and will be reviewing the SFS' strategic plans and budget. W. Neville added that the Board of Directors will be meeting in June and will want to consider the SFS budget at that time.



Andre Raynauld and Jean-Pierre Vidal provide their report on the costs of smoking to the Smokers Freedom Society.

http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/tid/jrw77h00  (included in a a 273 page set of documents provided by Roger Ackman to Kendrick Wells on September 12, 1995)


479 AA

CTMC takes note of transitions at Smokers Freedom Society. 

Minutes of the CTMC Public Affairs Committee – Thursday, August 30, 1990

6. Smokers' Freedom Society

A) Varia:

John Hutchinson gave the committee an overview of recent SFS activities. He indicated that the society is actively involved in the process of verifying its membership rolls. He listed a variety of initiatives including the transfer of the society's main office to Toronto, a possible legal challenge to Air Canada's European flights smoking ban and the development of a chapter handbook.

Mr. Hutchinson announced that the two members of the society's Board of Directors have resigned and that he is currently looking for replacements.

B) Social Cost Study:

Mr. Hutchinson presented a brief schedule of the release of the Raynauld-Vidal study. The translation (to English) is completed and being reviewed. He hopes to release the full report on September 19. Mr. Hutchinson indicated that he wanted to hold "by-invitation-only" media briefings in Montreal and Toronto .

The Public Affairs Committee expressed concern about the lack of on-going communication from the SFS. The committee also suggested that, given the significance of the Raynauld study, the utmost in professionalism be exercised in all aspects relating to the release of the report.



CTMC  head, Bill Neville, expresses disappointment with impact of Smokers Freedom Society on smoking bans.

Bill Neville, as head of the CTMC, writes to the three heads of the tobacco companies and offers his “stock of where we are and where we might be headed.”

Our ETS program on workplace restrictions, etc., has been sporadic and generally ineffective. We have to some extent looked to the Smokers' Freedom Society to lead here, but their effort is not much more impressive. The result, not surprisingly, has been a steady string of smoking restriction laws at the federal, provincial and municipal levels with the antis pushing hard for even more (e.g. Ottawa by-law to outlaw all smoking in the workplace; NSRA push to amend the existing Ontario legislation).


479 BB

CTMC directs Smokers Freedom Society to contribute to global meeting on smokers rights. --- and notes problems with economic study.

Minutes of the CTMC Public Affairs Committee, October 29, 1990


A request for a special contribution to help defray the costs of the first International Smokers' Rights Conference in Helsinki (Oct. 25-27) was discussed. The Committee unanimously approved a contribution of $5, 000. , to be drawn from the CTMC's operating budget and to be channelled through the Smokers' Freedom Society.


The Committee reviewed recent developments in the operations of the SFS and concluded that the Social Costs study by Messrs. Raynauld and Vidal is not ready to be released and will not be in the near future. The CTMC was mandated to ask Mr. Hutchinson:

1. to proceed with development of documentation on the Social Costs Report but not to proceed with its release at this time.

2. to submit the audited financial statement of the SFS for 1989-1990 at the earliest possible date


479 CC

CTMC support for Smokers Freedom Society is again under review.

MINUTES of a meeting of the Public Affairs Committee held in Toronto on January 28, 1991.

Mr. LaRiviere reported that Mr. Neville is working on a recommendation on the future of SFS and that it will be circulated for comment before the end of the month. Mr. LaRiviere also reported that National Public Relations is working with Messrs. Raynauld and Vidal on a planned March 19th release of the "Social Costs" study. Mr. LaRiviere was asked to ascertain that the CTMC Board of Directors agrees with the publication plan



Smokers Freedom Society press release:  low Income Groups Savaged by Budget



215 H

Society continues to provide members with information casting doubt on health concerns about smoking and second hand smoke.

Calumet – Vol.5. No. 2.  June 1991 – (English Version)


The smoking scare debunked: A doctor’s response to the myths about tobacco

Smuggling, Theft, violence: the price of tobacco taxes

Inflation: where there’s smoke, there’s ire

In the air

Five cigars a day keeps George Burns spry at 95

Taking a stand for smokers rights

Clearing the air: facts about second hand smoke



Smokers Freedom Society has another new director – and a budget of almost $1  million per year.

Canadian Tobacco Manufacturer's Council - Minutes of a Meeting of the Board of Directors, June 11, 1991


Mr. Phil Gillies, the new President of the SFS, effective June I, 1991, was introduced to the Board of Directors. He presented his six-month action program and proposed budget for review. The Directors approved a contribution of up to $470,000 for the period July 1 to December 31, 1991.



New Smokers Freedom Society president is briefed by the US Tobacco Institute





433 C

CTMC seems satisfied with new Smokers Freedom Society president

Minutes of a Meeting of the CTMC Board of Directors,  September 13, 1991


Mr. Phil Gillies, the new President of the SFS, reported on developments.

The Board expressed its satisfaction with the progress made by Mr. Gillies since he became President of the SFS on June I, 1991.



CTMC informs readers of its newsbulletin “Tabacum” about changes to Smokers’ Freedom Society.


The Smokers' Freedom Society (SFS) has a new head, ne w national headquarters, a new logo and a revitalized program of activities .

The new President is Phil Gillies, a public affairs and communications consultant and a former member of the Ontario Legislature for Brantford and a member of the Ontario Cabinet in 1985.

Mr. Gillies took office in June and has undertaken a recruitment ,representation and restructuring program.

…. The newly-appointed Director o f the Quebec region is Luc Dumulong, a psychologist wit h experience in the education and, health care fields.     




CTMC head, Bill Neville writes Phil Gillies, the new head of the Smokers Freedom Society and offers him a big “to do” list.

This 3 page memo covers a number of issues.  Neville asks Gillies to:

  • Get the Raynaud/Vidal economic study read for publication before more taxes are announced.

  • Look into employment discrimination

  • Get briefed on issues in the US

  • Look at legislation to prohibit employment discrimination based on lifestyle issues

  • Look into views of Human Rights Commissions

  • Look at Dutch courtesy campaigns

  • Look at Italian promotional calendars of smokers

  • Improve relations with members

  • Try to have NSRA’s charitable tax status revoked.


479 EE

CTMC turns down request for funding increase.

Minutes of a meeting of the public affairs committee of the CTMC, November 21, 1991

05 SFS

A) Mr. Gillies distributed and commented upon his 1992 Action Plan and Budget.

The Committee reviewed Mr. Gillies' submission and recommended that it be amended and that the contribution be reduced accordingly to no more than $975, 000. Mr. Neville will meet Mr. Gillies for this purpose.


433 B

CTMC approves budget of $987,600 per year for Smokers Freedom Society.

Minutes of a Meeting of the Board of Directors –December 10, 1991


The President of the Smokers' Freedom Society, Phil Gillies, addressed the CTMC Board to present the SFS 1992 Action Plan and 1992 Budget.

The Board of Directors expressed satisfaction with the SFS activities in 1991 and with the SFS 1992 Action Plan.

The Board approved a contribution to the SFS for 1992 in the amount of $987,600. The Board authorized the payment of $493,800 to the SFS for the first six months of 1992. The second installment is subject to authorization at the June, 1992 meeting of the Board of Directors.


479 GG

CTMC takes note of developments at Smokers Freedom Society.

Minutes of the Public Affairs Committee of CTMC, September 1, 1992.

Mr. Gillies reviewed recent and future developments and, in particular, the forthcoming publication of the Raynauld-Vidal Report on "social costs”, He was asked to deal directly with the request for a contribution to Smokepeace .



Smokers Freedom Society releases the study by Andre Raynauld and Jean-Pierre Vidal





Publication of Raynauld and Vidal paper “Smokers’ Burden onSociety: Myth and Reality in Canada.  Published in Canadian Public Policy – XVIII:3:300-317.



215 I

Today’s Smoker - 1993 Special Election issue

Tobacco Tax survey derailed by parties’ brass

Candidates who are in favour of lowering tobacco taxes

Gillies carries the SFS message through the west



Smokers Freedom Society hosts former RCMP commissioner Rod Stamler in presentation about contraband tobacco and taxes






The Society tries to mobilize against health warnings.

Communiqué aux supporters

(asking them to write to then health minister, Benoit Bouchard, to suggest that there be no change to health warnings)



Right-wing journal, the Alberta Report, profiles the Smokers Freedom Society




Smokers Freedom Society issues another newsletter 1993

Report on activities in its various regional chapters




CTMC again looks to Smokers Freedom Society to carry its message to government

Minutes of Joint meeting of CTMC Public Affairs and Technical Committees –

The Smokers Freedom Society is seen as a way of ensuring industry influence on Canadian General Standards Board process to measure Benzo(a)Pyrene.


Finally, the joint meeting of the Public Affairs and Technical Committees decided that no representatives of the tobacco industry ought to be participate in this standard writing exercise until the representation is balanced so that the tobacco producers, which could include the growers, the processors and the packagers, together with the Smokers' Freedom Society, have an equal number of votes on the Committee setting the standard.



Testimony regarding Smokers Freedom Society

Jean Louis Mercier

Michel Descoteaux

Michel Bédard

Jacques LaRiviere

William Neville


Senior personnel of the Smokers Freedom Society

Important note on accessing documents:

The documents from the Blais-Letourneau cases are linked below through their exhibit number.  To access these documents, you must first link onto the web-site of the plaintiffs, and press on the blue bar "direct access to information."