Litigating the Tobacco Industry: Progress and Promise


This webinar was presented by the Program Training & Consultation Centre (PTCC) in collaboration with the Smoking & Health Action Foundation (SHAF).


  • François Damphousse, Director, Montreal Office, Non-Smokers’ Rights Association
  • Cynthia Callard, Executive Director, Physicians for a Smoke-Free Canada
  • Rob Cunningham, Senior Policy Analyst, Canadian Cancer Society

On June 1, 2015, Justice Brian Riordan of the Quebec Superior Court released his judgment in favour of two Quebec class actions against Canada’s three main tobacco companies: Imperial Tobacco, Rothmans, Benson & Hedges, and JTI MacDonald. He ordered the companies to pay more than $15 billion in moral and punitive damages to almost 100,000 Quebec smokers and ex-smokers who developed emphysema, lung cancer or throat cancer. This lawsuit was not only the largest class-action suit to ever make it to trial, but also the first tobacco-related class-action suit to get to trial. 

This webinar presented some of the fascinating highlights and blockbuster revelations of the two-and-a half year trial, including key witnesses and experts who testified. The presenters summarized Justice Riordan’s landmark decision and the subsequent response from the tobacco companies. They addressed implications of the ruling for the future and how it can be used for meaningful tobacco control reform.

In addition, the webinar highlighted other forms of tobacco-related litigation against the industry, such as the provincial cost recovery lawsuits, outlining progress and potential benefits to tobacco control.

Date of Resource:2016/01/07
Target Audience:Public health practitioners and policy makers working in comprehensive tobacco control
Topic:Tobacco litigation, Quebec tobacco class-action suits

The following resources were created for the webinar Litigating the Tobacco Industry: Progress and Promise, held on January 7, 2016.

File Type File Size
Webinar Presentation Slide Deck - January 7, 2016

10.8 MB
Webinar Audio Recording - January 7, 2016
Audio 9.31 MB
Webinar Video Recording - January 7, 2016 (the download may take a few minutes)
Video75.9 MB
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