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Lecture 13

Lecture 13 - The Charter of Rights and Freedom

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Political Science
Luc Turgeon

March 5, 2014 The Charter of Rights and Freedom Key Terms  Parliamentary supremacy vs Constitutional supremacy  Charter of Rights and Freedom  Notwithstanding clause  Reasonable limit clause Reminder: Key distinction  Parliamentary supremacy • Parliament is the ultimate source of authority • In Canada, we always had limited parliamentary supremacy  Constitutional supremacy • Constitution is the ultimate source of supremacy • Entails judicial review  Canada has made the transition from (limited) parliamentary Before the Charter: The Canadian Bill of Rights  Adopted by the Conservative Party • More “conservative” view of the Canadian political community  Contained many of the rights that would be in the Charter • Freedom of speech, religion, life, liberty, and security  Significant limits o More of an orientation/aspiration document than a document with legal force  Limited impact The Constitution Act of 1982 and the Charter of Rights and Freedom *Until 1982, every time Canada wanted to modify its constitution, it had to get permission from the British Parliament  ConstitutionAct of 1982 • Part 1: Charter of Rights and Freedom • Part 2: Rights of Aboriginal Peoples • Part 3: Equalization • Part 5: procedure for amending the Constitution 3 ways: o 1) Resolution accepted in both the Senate and the House of Commons o 2) Resolutions accepted by the legislative assemblies in at least 2/3 (7 provinces) of the provinces that have in the aggregate in accordance with the latest general census, at least 50% of the population o But if you wanted to abolish the monarchy, you would need all 10 provinces to agree o 3) Resolution between an individual province and the federal government (as long as the resolution only affects that province) Ex: bilateral clause used by New Brunswick to be recognized as a bilingual province  Another reminder • Constitutional accord signed by all provinces except Quebec o But Quebec still has to abide by the constitution (it’
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