613-562-5199
info@icjcanada.org

 Today, Canada celebrates the 36th anniversary of the signing of Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Charter was signed by then-Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau and Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on April 17, 1982. In 2015, 93 per cent of Canadians surveyed chose the Charter as the most important symbol of national identity, ranking it higher than the flag, the RCMP, the national anthem, hockey, the beaver, and the maple leaf.

ICJ Canada President Errol Mendes encourages all Canadians to reflect on the meaning of the Charter’s introduction and how it has shaped Canada since it came into force. The Charter guarantees basic rights and freedoms for everyone in Canada and continues to be essential in the protection of human rights, the rule of law, and the independence of the judiciary.

"Aujourd’hui, j’aimerais rappeler aux Canadiens que nous n’avons pas plus grand devoir que celui de veiller aux libertés des uns et des autres. Les mots enchâssés dans la Charte représentent nos droits, nos libertés et surtout notre responsabilité collective."

For more information on the history of the Charter click here and here. For information on the ICJ click here, and for membership information click here.

ICJ Canada Board Member and University of Ottawa Law Professor John Packer supports Bob Rae’s call for Canada to play a leadership role in addressing the Rohingya crisis. “Not only is this amongst the world’s worst humanitarian crises, but it is another threat to the international rules-based order presenting evident challenges for regional peace and security and sustainable peace and development in Myanmar and its neighbourhood. Canada is well-placed to step up with substantial humanitarian assistance, but also to press for accountability of those individually responsible for the crimes committed. In this regard, the ICC Prosecutor’s request for clarification of jurisdiction is a welcome development. But beyond humanitarian assistance and the fight against impunity, Canada should also lead in addressing the larger challenges of Myanmar’s State responsibility for the situation as a whole and in urging and assisting an appropriate inter-governmental approach, consistent with the UN Charter, to the root causes. Issues of human rights, democratic governance, and the Rule of Law – within Myanmar and at international level – are at the heart of these challenges.”

For more information on the Rohingya crisis, see this article by the Guardian, the report by Global Affairs Canada, and the ICC Prosecutors request

For more information about ICJ Canada, view our mandate here. To purchase or renew a membership please visit our membership page

ICJ Canada president and University of Ottawa Law Professor Errol Mendes congratulates the University of Victoria on Canada's first Indigenous Law Degree. Indigenous and Aboriginal Legal Traditions are gaining traction around the world and we are thrilled to see this development coming from one of Canada's leaders in post-secondary education while promoting Indigenous law and faculty. This aligns with our mandate of promoting human rights and the rule of law throughout Canada and world and aligns  with the Truth and Reconciliation's recommendations to increase Indigenous knowledge and teaching methods into classrooms at all levels.

On April 4th, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg spoke at a CÉPI - CIPS Town Hall discussion on the importance of NATO during a time in which the rules-based international order is being challenged. ICJ Canada President Errol Mendes joined Mr. Stoltenberg on stage as host and discussion moderator.

Jens Stoltenberg is Norwegian and held various posts in the government including Prime Minister of Norway from 2005-2013

During his tenure as Prime Minister, Mr Stoltenberg frequently called for NATO to focus on security challenges close to Allied territory.

Mr Stoltenberg is a strong supporter of enhanced transatlantic cooperation, including better burden-sharing across the Atlantic. He sees NATO and the EU as complementary organisations in terms of securing peace and development in Europe and beyond.

Mr Stoltenberg has had a number of international assignments. These include chairing the UN High-level Panel on System-wide Coherence and the High-level Advisory Group on Climate Change Financing. He was also UN Special Envoy on Climate Change.

4Apr18NATO 1 4APRNATO 2
Monday, 08 January 2018 14:43

We want to hear from you! Votre opinion compte!

Written by

Happy New Year!

May 2018 bring you a peace filled life, warmth and togetherness with your work, friends, family and much prosperity. ICJ Canada’s first order of business will be to get our podcast series off the ground and we want to hear from you! What topics would like covered? What are the pressing legal issues facing Canada today?  Are there any legal actors (judges, professors, lawyers, plaintiffs) we should profile or interview?

Send us a quick e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and let us know by next Friday, January 19, 2018. We would love to hear from you!

We would also encourage anyone who has not already purchased a membership for 2018 to please consider doing so. Your support is essential in allowing ICJ Canada to do projects such as these podcasts and advocate for the rule of law, judicial independence, and human rights in Canada. 

 

Bonne année!

Que cette nouvelle année vous apporte la réussite dans tout ce que vous entreprenez et que le bonheur soit dans vos coeurs et dans ceux de vos proches. Nous sommes en train de préparer la programmation pour 2018 et notre premier ordre du jour sera de démarrer notre série de baladodiffusions.  Nous avons décidé de solliciter nos membres pour voirs quels thématiques ils aimeraient abordés. Quels sujets aimeriez-vous couvrir? Quels sont les problèmes juridiques pressants auxquels le Canada est confronté aujourd'hui? Y a-t-il des intervenants juridique (juges, professeurs, avocats, plaignants) que nous devrions interviewer?

Envoyez-nous un courriel à This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. d'ici le vendredi 19 janvier 2018 avec vos suggestions!

Nous encourageons également toute personne qui n'a pas déjà acheté une adhésion pour 2018 de cliquer ici. Votre soutien est essentiel pour permettre à la CIJ - Canada de réaliser des projets tels que les balados et de défendre la primauté du droit, l'indépendance judiciaire et les droits de la personne au Canada.

 

ICJ Canada was thrilled at the turnout for the Canada's Constitutional Democracy: The 150th Anniversary Celebration book launch! This event was hosted by ICJ Canada President and general editor for the book Errol Mendes, and Senator Marilou McPhedran who also contributed a wonderful chapter on the efforts of Canadian women to acheive substantive equality through the Charter

In attendance were guests such as John Packer, Elizabeth May, Stéphane Beaulac, and many other Parliamentarians and contributors. 

You can order this landmark constitutional law and historical text celebrating Canada's 150th anniversary of Confederation here: 

https://store.lexisnexis.ca/en/categories/shop-by-jurisdiction/federal-13/canadas-constitutional-democracy-the-150th-anniversary-celebration-skusku-cad-6616/details

             

Sunday, 19 November 2017 14:49

ICJ - Canada is on social media!

Written by

ICJ Canada is now on social media! Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ICJCanada/ or on Twitter https://twitter.com/icjcanada

 

Thursday, 22 June 2017 16:45

June 2017 News Overview

Written by
 
The past few months have been very busy for ICJ Canada! Read on for a brief overview of our recent activities.


PROJECT UPDATES


Understanding and strengthening the Rule of Law in Canada – We are very proud to have published a unique book: “Canada and the Rule of Law: 150 Years after Confederation / Le Canada et la primauté du droit: 150 ans après la Confédération”. This book features 35 short, thought-provoking essays by lawyers, judges, and professors from across Canada on the meaning of the rule of law and the state of the rule of law in Canada today, with a significant focus on human rights issues and reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians. We will disseminate it widely, including to our members, and hope that it will contribute to public debate and meaningful change. Donate to ICJC or renew your membership today to receive a copy. 

Thank you to all book contributors and to our editorial committee for their work to make this interesting and meaningful publication a reality.

Improving the judicial appointments process - In a bi-coastal team effort, British Columbia VP Rebecca Robb and Maritimes VP Richard Devlin are leading a comparative research project on foreign judicial appointments’ processes. They will prepare a report that summarizes the experiences of other foreign jurisdictions, and compares those experiences to the Canadian context, which was previously summarized in ICJ Canada’s Interim Report: The Canadian Federal Judicial Appointments Process and Opportunities for Reform. This research will be used to develop further recommendations on reforming judicial appointments in Canada.

Ending Modern Slavery – since our panel session in Toronto in November, we have been continuing to develop partnerships that are bringing us closer to our goal of seeing a Canadian legislative or regulatory response that will improve supply chain reporting to address forced labour. We have held discussions with the Canadian Securities Administrators, SHARE (which focuses on responsible investment), and various stakeholders, including securities issuers. More consultations are planned and we are optimistic that we will see progress in response to our efforts.


RECENT EVENTS


An Evening with Canada’s Ambassador to the United States, David MacNaughton – Our annual fundraising dinner, held May 29 in Toronto, was a great success. With a sold out audience of over 100 lawyers, business people, academics and law students, Ambassador MacNaughton delivered an inspiring talk on how vital it is for trade and other relations with the US to be governed by the rule of law as opposed to administrative discretion. He presented excellent arguments that preserving the foundational rules of trade in the North American Free Trade Agreement and those under the World Trade Organization was in the long term interests of Canada, and the US and Canada would be resolute in promoting and protecting those foundational rules. 

Realizing Rights 2017: Human Rights and Constitutionalism Conference - ICJ Canada is proud to have been a partner of this timely Conference, held June 8 to 10 at the University of Ottawa. Participants heard from close to 70 speakers over three days, including Supreme Court Justice Malcolm Rowe, Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities Carla Qualtrough, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing Leilani Farha, and National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Perry Bellegarde. 

book launch discussion cropped

A very special event at the Conference was our ICJ Canada book launch panel, featuring 13 of the contributors to the book (pictured L-R: Raj Anand, Samer Muscati, Hanna Gros, Marie-Claude Landry, Robin Sully, Errol Mendes, Janine Lesperance, Scott Fairley, Richard Devlin, John Packer, Julius Grey, Alex Neve; Karen Busby missing from photo).

Annual General Meeting – held June 7 in Ottawa and by teleconference, participants discussed ICJ Canada’s ongoing activities and ideas to ensure the organization’s continued success.


OTHER DEVELOPMENTS


Calgary-based ICJC group is growing - A dynamic new ICJC Prairie Steering Committee has been working since the New Year. They are planning a speaker event for the autumn, to follow up to the successful dinner with Dick Pound held last October (which featured a special guest appearance by Olympic Gold medallist Erica Wiebe!). They are also launching a research project, focusing on migrant children’s rights and the Safe Third Country Agreement. The enthusiastic group includes leaders from the legal and broader community including members of the judiciary, representatives of the University of Calgary, and social service participants, and is happy to welcome new members. 

Renewed Faculty Group at the University of Ottawa – Students at uOttawa have drafted a constitution and are eager to officially launch an ICJC Faculty club in the fall. These students will be participating in research, communications, and event planning. We look forward to supporting the development of the group.

Tarnopolsky Award to honour human rights leaders – A winner for the 2017 Tarnopolsky Prize has been chosen by the Selection Committee. We look forward to announcing the name of the very deserving nominee soon, and look forward to planning a ceremony in his honour, likely to be held this autumn. Last year’s ceremony was held on Parliament Hill and featured a captivating discussion on responding to the refugee crisis between Senator Ratna Omidvar and 2016 Tarnpolsky Award winner Professor Jennifer Bond.


GET INVOLVED


If you would like to know more about any of the activities mentioned, and/or would like to contribute more directly to ICJ Canada’s work, please contact ICJC Executive Director Janine Lespérance: email - janine.lesperance [at] icjcanada.org or phone - 613-562-5199.

book coverICJ Canada has published a unique collection of essays on the occasion of the 150th Anniversary of Canadian Confederation. Canada and the Rule of Law: 150 Years after Confederation / Le Canada et la primauté du droit: 150 ans après la Confédération features 35 short, captivating pieces by jurists from across Canada, interpreting the theme in diverse ways.

Topics addressed in the book include the Canadian ‘origin myth’, the interpretation of the rule of law in Canadian constitutional jurisprudence, the relationship between access to justice and the rule of law, the role of members of the judicial profession in relation to the rule of law, and the need for a rule of law that upholds fundamental human rights. Authors identify areas in which our continued vigilance and commitment to improvement is critical for ensuring a strong rule of law, particularly in relation to human rights. Several essays in the book focus on reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in Canada, and advocate for a rule of law that respects Indigenous laws. The essays are written in both English and French.

book launch groupOur book launch took place on June 10, as part of the Realizing Rights 2017: Human Rights and Constitutionalism Conference. ICJ Canada Executive Director Janine Lespérance chaired the discussion, which featured 13 other book contributors: Raj Anand, Karen Busby, Richard Devlin, Scott Fairley, Julius Grey, Hanna Gros, Marie-Claude Landry, Errol Mendes, Samer Muscati, Alex Neve, John Packer, and Robin Sully.

Additional contributors to the book are Roger Bilodeau, Ian Binnie, John Campion, Adam Dodek, Maureen Duffy, Mary Eberts, Dennis Edney, Allan Hutchinson, Fiona Keith, Marcia Kran, Lucie Lamarche, Anne Levesque, Kathleen Mahoney, L.S. Tony Mandamin, Jesse McCormick, Bradford Morse, Pamela Palmater, Debra Parkes, Kimberly Prost, Daniel Proulx, Michèle Rivet, Colleen Sheppard, Shauna Van Praagh, Sherri Walsh, and Jack Watson. ICJ Canada wishes to sincerely thank all of our contributors for their excellent, thought-provoking writing.

We’d also like to acknowledge the editorial team that made this publication happen: Janine Lespérance (Lead Editor), Richard Devlin, Errol Mendes, John Packer, Michèle Rivet, and Peter Tinsley.

We intend to distribute this book widely, and hope that it will spark discussions about the nature and meaning of the rule of law for Canadians.

PURCHASE BOOKS THROUGH DONATION to ICJ Canada ($50 suggested donation). All 2017 ICJC members will receive a copy of the book.

HOC 2017 0131 CD 05 030 web SMALLOn January 31, 2017, ICJC members, colleagues, Parliamentarians, lawyers, and other members of the community gathered on Parliament Hill in Ottawa to recognize her Professor Jennifer Bond's achievements. She is the 2016 winner of the Walter S. Tarnopolsky Award. Following the Award Ceremony, in lieu of giving a traditional address, Independent Senator for Ontario Ratna Omidvar joined Professor Bond for an engaging discussion on "Responding to the Refugee Crisis".

Professor Bond is Associate Professor at the University of Ottawa; Chair of the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative; and Founder and Faculty Director of the University of Ottawa Refugee Hub. She has also served as Special Advisor to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship; was on the founding executive of the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, and led the creation of the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program (“SSP”), which has mobilized over 1,300 pro-bono lawyers to assist Canadians across the country seeking to privately sponsor refugees. She has published extensively, is a frequent media commentator, has given numerous presentations at national and international events, and has contributed to litigation, including by appearing in interventions in important refugee cases at the Supreme Court of Canada. She holds a BA and BCom from the University of Calgary, an LLB from the University of Victoria, and an LLM from Yale Law School.

DSC 0039copyHer nomination was supported by several colleagues who noted Professor Bond’s truly outstanding dedication to refugees over the past decade. She has demonstrated exceptional leadership, advocacy, and community building in the face of the migrant crisis, and been a great source of inspiration to many people through her work.

One of the Tarnopolsky award criteria for 2016 was that it must be awarded to a person not yet at the midpoint of his or her career. With her remarkable achievements to date, Professor Bond is an extremely deserving candidate.

 

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