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Articles | Dan Shouldice | July 27, 2009
Refusal to Perform Same-Sex Marriage Costs Sask. Marriage Commissioner $2500

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2), Human Rights

A Saskatchewan marriage commissioner who refused to perform a same-sex marriage ceremony has lost his appeal of a Human Rights Tribunal decision which ordered him to pay $2500 to one of the grooms. Saskatchewan’s Court of Queen’s Bench ruled that,

Articles | Dan Shouldice | July 3, 2009
Saskatchewan Refers Same-Sex Marriage Question to Courts

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2), Equality Rights (Section 15)

The Saskatchewan government announced on July 3, 2009 that it will ask the provincial Court of Appeal for its opinion on draft legislation to allow marriage commissioners to opt out of performing same-sex marriages based on their religious beliefs, while ensuring there

Articles | Chris Younker | June 19, 2009
The Canadian Human Rights Act & Freedom of Speech: On Parliament’s To-Do List?

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2), Human Rights

The Canadian Human Rights Commission (CHRC) recently commented on proposals to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act[1] (CHRA) from law professor Richard Moon.[2] In his report, Moon called for the elimination of section 13 of the CHRA, which regulates the use of hate speech

Articles | Anna-May Choles | May 21, 2009
Supreme Court to Hear Case on Privilege for Confidential Media Sources

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

On May 22, 2009 the Supreme Court of Canada will hear oral arguments regarding the case of National Post, et al v Her Majesty the Queen.[1] The case will determine whether confidential media sources are covered by privilege, and whether that relationship

Articles | Chris Younker | May 15, 2009
RCMP and Freedom to Associate

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

On May 7, the federal government filed an appeal of the landmark decision of the Ontario Superior Court in Mounted Police Association of Ontario v AG (Canada).[1] The court ruled that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police regulations prohibiting collective bargaining were unconstitutional

Articles | Jim Young | May 8, 2009
Muslim Women May Have to Remove Veils in Ontario Courtrooms

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

The Ontario Superior Court recently ruled that a judge may require a Muslim witness to remove her veil without unduly interfering with her section 2(a) Charter right to freedom of religion. The case of R. v. N.S.[1]turns on the principle that when two or

Articles | Brandon Mewhort | March 13, 2009
Religious Freedom versus Defendants’ Right to Face Their Accusers

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

The Ontario Superior Court is to decide whether an alleged sexual assault victim is allowed to wear a Muslim veil while testifying in court.[1] Justice Frank Marrocco will address the conflict between the values of religious freedom and a defendant’s right

Articles | Natasha Dubé | March 12, 2009
R v. Ahenakew: Promotion of Hatred or Revolting Comment?

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

In 2002, David Ahenakew, a former Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, gave a speech and subsequent interview in which he made comments on various ethnic groups. These comments included blaming Jewish people for causing the Second World War,

Articles | Brandon Mewhort | February 20, 2009
R. v. White Appeal

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

On January 29th, the Supreme Court of Canada granted leave to appeal an Alberta Court of Appeal decision that upheld a mandatory publication ban in bail proceedings.[1] Michael White, an Edmontonian charged with the second-degree murder of his wife, applied

Articles | Chris Younker | February 18, 2009
Freedom vs. Privacy

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

In a recent 3-2 decision, the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled that section 517 of the Criminal Code (giving the right of an accused to invoke a publication ban on pre-trial hearings) was constitutional and therefore did not infringe section 2(b) of

Articles | Brandon Mewhort | February 6, 2009
Edmonton Plans to Deal with Aggressive Panhandlers

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2), Legal Rights (Sections 7-14), Equality Rights (Section 15)

Edmonton has begun looking for ways to deal with aggressive panhandlers in public places. The Edmonton Police Service is most concerned with a group of 20 or 30 panhandlers who can make as much as $400 a day, and who

Articles | Brandon Mewhort | February 2, 2009
Montreal Considers a Bylaw Prohibiting Insults to Police

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

Montreal is considering a new bylaw that would make it illegal to insult police officers while on duty.[1] The Montreal Police Brotherhood has been seeking such a bylaw since 2003; however, Paul Chablo, the Chief Inspector of the Montreal police department,

Articles | Matthew Hennigar | January 12, 2009
British Columbia Puts Religious Freedom and Polygamy to the Test

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

On January 8, British Columbia Attorney General Wally Oppal finally put an end to decades of what had become a mockery of the rule of law, when he decided to lay polygamy charges against Winston Blackmore, the leader of a

Articles | Alex Bailey | January 10, 2009
The Constitutional Status of Polygamy in Canada

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

A special prosecutor for the government of British Columbia has charged Warren Blackmore and James Oler, leaders of the fundamentalist Mormon community in Bountiful B.C., with polygamy under section 293 of Canada’s Criminal Code.[1] Until recently, the province’s attorney-general had refrained

Articles | Terry Romaniuk | October 30, 2008
Publication Ban Victory for Press

Category: The Charter, Fundamental Freedoms (Section 2)

On October 30, 2008 the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed an appeal in Toronto Police Association v. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.[1] In 2001, an RCMP-led Special Task Force began to investigate allegations made against certain members of the Toronto Police Service (TPS).[2] The task

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