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Archive For Entries On Charter

Empowering Wind-Farm Development in Ontario: Dixon v MOE

As wind farms become an increasingly common sight in Ontario’s rural communities, disputes among residents and green-energy developers are likely to occur with ever-greater frequency. In the past two years, the Environmental Review Tribunal (“ERT”) has heard a number of complaints regarding the approval of wind-farm projects by the Ministry of the Environment. In this […]

PS v Ontario: ONCA Finds Ontario Mental Health Law Breached the Charter

The Ontario Court of Appeal’s judgment in PS v Ontario, 2014 ONCA 900, has determined that a detainee in a mental health institution suffered discrimination and a denial of procedural fairness, contrary to his Charter rights under Sections 15 and 7. The case arose from the 19-year-long involuntary detention of a man, identified only as PS, at a […]

RCMP Permitted to Form Unions: A Purposive Approach to Freedom of Association in Mounted Police Association of Ontario v Canada

In Mounted Police Association of Ontario v Canada (Attorney General), 2015 SCC 1, the Supreme Court of Canada (“SCC”) made a major pronouncement on the scope of the section 2(d) freedom of association right under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. In doing so, the court overturned Delisle v Canada (Deputy Attorney General), [1999] […]

Refugees, Human Smuggling, and Third-Party Altruism: R v Appulonappa

On February 16, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada (“SCC”) will hold a hearing for the appeal of R v Appulonappa, 2014 BCCA 163, a case that will have a significant impact on immigration and refugee law. The SCC’s eventual decision in Appulonappa will deeply affect both refugee claimants and those who assist asylum seekers […]

Ontario Court of Appeal Says Housing Rights Case Can’t Proceed: Tanudjaja v Canada

Ontario housing activists were disappointed by a December ruling from the Ontario Court of Appeal. In a 2-1 decision, the court decided that the pleadings in Tanudjaja v Canada, 2014 ONCA 852 [Tanudjaja], did not present the bench with a justiciable issue, upholding a lower court decision to strike the application. The application had asked the court […]

BC Teachers’ Federation: A Finding of Discrimination Against Birth Mothers Affirmed by the SCC

On November 14, 2014, the Supreme Court of Canada rendered its oral judgment in British Columbia Teachers’ Federation v British Columbia Public School Employers’ Association, 2014 SCC 70 [BC Teachers], overturning the British Columbia (“BC”) Court of Appeal and affirming an arbitrator’s finding of discrimination against birth mothers. The case hinged on the determination of whether parental leave […]

The Retirement of Justice Louis LeBel and the Secretive Process that Led to the Appointment of Suzanne Côté

The government has slammed the door on parliamentary and public involvement regarding the replacement of retiring Justice Louis LeBel. On November 30, 2014, Justice LeBel turned 75, the mandatory retirement age for Supreme Court judges. Most justices often depart some months before their birthdays, but LeBel decided to take his tenure right to the end. […]

Forest Ethics Advocacy Association v Canada: Barred from Charter Relief

This comment is the second part of a two-part series analyzing the Federal Court of Appeal (“FCA”) decision in Forest Ethics Advocacy Association v Canada (National Energy Board), 2014 FCA 245 [Forest Ethics]. As outlined in part one, Forest Ethics is a judicial review of interlocutory decisions related to a proceeding on the approval of the […]

Wakeling v United States of America: Supreme Court Upholds Wiretap Disclosure Provision

In Wakeling v United States of America, 2014 SCC 72, the Supreme Court of Canada (“SCC”) considered the constitutionality of the legislative scheme surrounding the disclosure of information collected through wiretaps to foreign governments. In a 3-1-3 split decision, the Court dismissed this challenge to the Criminal Code, RSC 1985, c C-46. While grappling with […]

R v Conception: The Last Word Between Courts and Hospitals for Unfit Accused

Part XX.1 of Canada’s Criminal Code, RSC 1985, c C-46 [the Code], fundamentally altered the way a criminally accused person with a mental illness engages with the criminal justice system. This comprehensive new structure was a response to cases like R v Swain, 1991 1 SCR 933, in which Parliament recognized the need for a new statutory regime sensitive to the […]