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Constitutional Roundtable – Richard Haigh

March 1, 2017 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm



Richard Haigh
Osgoode Hall Law School
York University

The Alberta Press Case

Wednesday, March 1, 2017
12:30 – 2:00
Room J-140, Jackman Law  Building
78 Queen’s Park

This paper/presentation will focus on the Reference re Alberta Statutes case (more colloquially known as the Alberta Press Case). The case is fascinating for a number of reasons. First, it is one of the earliest signals of the Supreme Court of Canada “finding its feet” and gaining a belief in its own stature and strength. Second, it is a case well known for a kind of Denning-like pronouncement from Chief Justice Duff (before Denning was even a judge!) on the idea of an implied bill of rights — judicial creativity that some might say was results-driven, others might say was a brilliantly conceived concept to achieve justice. Third, it is also a case of a province trying to expand its mandate into areas that could not have been easily imagined, and the Court using federalism as a sword.  Finally, it may have been the precursor to many debates about whether Canada should have a formal bill of rights, and how we could repatriate our Constitution — put differently, it is a case that foreshadowed much to come in terms of the 1982 amendments.

Richard Haigh is an Assistant Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School and Director of York’s Centre for Public Policy and Law and Co-Director of the Part-Time LLM in Constitutional Law at Osgoode. He has a doctorate from the University of Toronto in the area of freedom of conscience and religion. He was, until December 2007, the Associate Director, Graduate Program at Osgoode Professional Development. He has been a Senior Lecturer at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia, a Senior Advisor at the National Judicial Institute in Ottawa, and a Legal Research and Writing Lecturer at Osgoode. His research and teaching interests include Constitutional Law, Public Law, and Equity and Trusts. His recent published works include papers on the Supreme Court’s use of metaphor, division of powers in freedom of expression cases, freedom of conscience and whistleblowing, freedom of religion, dialogue theory, noise by-laws, election financing laws and prisoner’s voting rights; he also contributed a chapter to the State and Citizen casebook on Public Law (Emond-Montgomery, 3rd ed.).

A light lunch will be provided.

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March 1, 2017
12:30 pm - 2:00 pm