POL340 jan 15 HUMAN RIGHTS AND SHARIA LAW
- Problem when freedom of religion is in competition with gender equality
o In Ontario general view that self-determination is primary.
o Where there are economic circumstances that stop them it is the responsibility of the
state to come and protect them
- Limits of multiculturalism
o Canada and global
- Sharia law in Ontario
o Syed Mumtaz Ali, 2003, Arbitration Act
o A Muslim lawyer (Syed Mumtaz) said he was planning on opening a Sharia law Tribunal
– for men and women to attend to deal with the end of a Marriage. – to provide same
arbitration services as are available in similar institution
Under the Arbitration act he could
Said “good muslims must go here” – marketing strategy
- Arbitration act 1991
o Around for more than 10 yrs
o In 1991 alternative dispute resolution was fashionable – instead of going to courts
(restricted rules, delays and expensive) take your dispute elsewhere, get a mediator to
try to negotiate a settlement or take it to arbitration
A little like a private court, people are determined by agreement.
Under arbitration – decision is enforceable – to allow more affordable, speedier
o This already happening to a small degree in family law and to a significant degree in
Arbitration – private not a public court, facts are not public.
o Legislator past 1991 arbitration act saying decisions where enforceable including on
Can should jurisdiction under which to arbitrate (UK, Quebec, civil codes etc.)
o Jewish law tribunals were in game already and with arbitration act It became official.
BUT jewsish tribunals were contracts of these arbitrations where like private
contracts and the only way for general attorney to know about this would be if
it is brought to court to challenge it
Very few of these
o Sharia Law tribunal – abbesses itself of these laws.
Sharia law was not recently “quietly authorized to operate in Ontario” but was
lawful technically under the arbitration act.
Slogan became to “ban” or stop sharia law in Ontario – as they thought of it like
in Pakistan or other jurisdictions where they use misogynous tactics. – which
would not happen under the arbitration act in Ontario.
o Under arbitration act: