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Law 2101 (119)

Section 3: The Canadian Charter of Rights & Freedoms - Textbook Notes

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Western University
Law 2101
Mysty Sybil Clapton

SECTION 3 The Canadian Charter of RightsFreedomsTHE CHARTER APPLICATIONSCOPEThe Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is part of the Constitution of Canada The first 34 provisions of the Constitution Act 1982 set out the Charterincludes a number or different rights and freedoms under various headingsFundamental Freedoms Democratic Rights Mobility Rights Legal Rights Equality Rights Official Languages of Canada Minority Language Educational Rights S1 of the Charter serves a dual purposeit makes clear that the Charter rights and freedoms are guaranteed while at the same time making clear that they are not protected absolutely they are subject to reasonable limitsS33 if the notwithstanding clauseprovides that Parliament or a provincial legislature can legislate notwithstanding or regardless or certain Charter rights for a five year renewable periodCharter does not say that some rights are more important than others Who Must Comply With The CharterBills or Charters of rights are in general designed to control the actions of the statethey do not control the actions of private individuals The application of the Charter to Parliaments and the legislatures of each province means that all laws made by those bodies are subject to the CharterIt is sometimes difficult to determine whether or not a person or body is a state actor such that the Charter applies to them Not everything created by legislation is covered by the Charter Who May Benefit From Charter RightsWhere Charter rights extend to everyone then everyone will be able to exercise them Some apply to particular personsex the right to vote S3 applies only to Canadian citizens CONSTITUTIONAL INTERPRETATIONTHE ROLE OF THE COURTS IntroductionCharter entrenched individual rights and freedoms in our ConstitutionBefore the Charter Parliament and the legislatures were free to limit individual rights and freedoms as they thought fitThe courts assumed a newly important role as the institution which determines what can and cannot be the law
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