Nos étudiants et étudiantes, que ce soit au doctorat, à la maîtrise ou au BCL/LLB, n’ont pas chômé cet été, si on se fie au foisonnement de lettres d’opinions, d’articles scientifiques et d’autres billets que nous partageons ici!

If you’re worried about the notwithstanding clause, the judicial version is just as problematic

Brian Bird, DCL candidate, National Post, 3 September 2018

“Premier Doug Ford has announced that he will use the notwithstanding clause to override a court’s ruling that the law which reduces the size of Toronto city council is unconstitutional. This step has renewed the debate of how and when this controversial part of the Canadian Constitution should be used.

If the controversy over the notwithstanding clause stems from a discomfort with prolonging the life of laws that have been found unconstitutional, we would be remiss to overlook the relatively unknown but commonly deployed judicial version of it: the suspended declaration of constitutional invalidity…”
Keep reading…

Sarah Berger Richardson & Laura AlfordRight to Farm Legislation in Canada: Exceptional Protection for Standard Farm Practices

BCL/LLB candidate Laura Alford, and DCL candidate Sarah Berger Richardson, Ottawa Law Review, Vol. 50, No. 1, 2018

“Right to farm legislation (RTF) emerged during the 1970s and 80s in response to land-use conflicts during the post-war period between a rapidly-industrializing agricultural sector and developing residential and commercial peri-urban and rural areas. The primary function of RTFs is to create legislative protection for farmers against civil liability for nuisance for operations with adverse off-site impacts and, in some cases, to shield agri-food production from the enforcement of municipal bylaws. RTFs block litigation through the common law of nuisance in one of two ways: (1) either the dispute must first be addressed to provincial administrative board; or (2) the statute directly bars liability if the practice in question conforms to a legislatively-defined standard…”
Read the article on SSRN.

Injecting the Federal Principle into Myanmar’s Constitutional Amendment Procedure

BCL/LLB candidate Jesse Hartery, Tea Circle – Oxford Forum for New Perspectives on Burma/Myanmar, 5 September 2018

“Federal constitutions can be seen as pacts or as the expression of a new national project. While each way of conceptualizing a federal state can have an impact on its structure and the way in which judicial review is exercised, in both contexts, federations tend to have complex amendment procedures. As a general rule, constitutional amendments should be harder to achieve in federal states because any change must implicate the central legislature and the federated entities in some way. There is no doubt that Myanmar’s current constitutional amendment procedure is a roadblock to serious constitutional change….”
Keep reading…

Balarama HolnessPublic consultations on systemic racism to be held in Montreal for the first time

CBC News, 17 August 2018

“Montreal will be holding its first-ever public consultation on systemic racism and discrimination in the city — a move spurred by a 20,000-strong petition calling the city to action on an issue that affects more than 30 per cent of its population… [BCL/LLB candidate] Balarama Holness, spokesperson for Montreal In Action, the group that spearheaded the petition, said his group was confident they had collected enough valid signatures to push the matter forward…”
Keep reading…

Who has control over frozen embryos after divorce?

DCL candidate Stefanie Carsley, The Globe and Mail, 13 August 2018

“An Ontario judge ruled recently that a woman could use a frozen embryo to conceive despite her ex-husband’s objections. The court reached the right conclusion: A spouse who wishes to use an embryo to reproduce should be afforded this opportunity. The judge’s reasoning, however, sets a troubling precedent and highlights problems with Canada’s assisted reproduction laws.

Under federal law, spouses who create in vitro embryos from their own sperm and eggs have joint control over these embryos. Should one spouse change their mind – and no longer wish to use these embryos to reproduce – the other will be unable to use them…”
Keep reading…

Ryan HicksCentral Americans need more than Canadian handwringing

BCL/LLB candidate Ryan Hicks, Policy Options, 7 August 2018

The migrant crisis at the US-Mexico border is thousands of kilometres from Canada, but Ottawa could do more than just watch with concern.

[I met Vilma Evelia Lajuj Valey] “through a colleague at the legal clinic in Rabinal where I am working this summer through McGill’s McBurney Latin America Fellowship, a program that supports projects that aim to improve the health and social conditions of poor and marginalized people in the region. The clinic – Asociación Bufete Jurídico Popular – focuses its practice on human rights, women’s rights and land rights, in this majority Indigenous area. Its work also includes pursuing members of the government from the civil war period for crimes against humanity and genocide.

During Guatemala’s civil war, Rabinal and the surrounding villages were some of the hardest hit, with thousands of people massacred or disappeared by government forces…”
Keep reading…

pierre alexandre cardinalSlāv et Kanata : suite d’une saga sur le privilège blanc

Pierre-Alexandre Cardinal, doctorant en droit, LaPresse+, 27 juillet 2018

« Il y a quelques semaines, les événements entourant l’annulation du spectacle SLĀV de Robert Lepage m’ont poussé à écrire pour poser la nécessité d’un questionnement sur le privilège blanc au Québec.

Deux points centraux ressortaient des interventions et commentaires que j’ai reçus, et des discussions auxquelles j’ai participé. D’abord, l’histoire ne pourrait pas être sujette à une « appropriation culturelle », constituant un patrimoine universel, vidant l’appropriation culturelle de son sens dans cette situation. Ensuite, la question de la race serait un leurre, et les minorités pécheraient par leur ‘racialisme’… »
Lire la suite…

Politique et économie vers un nouvel internationalisme ?

Pierre-Alexandre Cardinal, doctorant en droit, avec Philippe Dumas, LaPresse+, 25 juillet 2018

« Le sommet de l’OTAN a été marqué par les déclarations incendiaires du président Trump remettant en question l’alliance atlantique. La présence turque au sommet deux jours après l’inauguration officielle d’Erdogan a laissé place à un aussi grand malaise, en raison des rapprochements entre la Turquie et la Russie. En pratique, Ankara envisage de se procurer des systèmes de missiles russes S-400. Ceux-ci sont non seulement incompatibles avec les systèmes de défense de l’OTAN, mais cela pourrait remettre en question la vente des avions F-35 à la Turquie par les Américains… »
Lire la suite…

florence ashleyFord’s Drug Plan Changes Will Out Many Young Adults’ Private Lives To Parents

LLM candidate Florence Ashley, HuffPost, 19 July 2018

“On June 30, Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott announced that minors and young adults who have private medication insurance will no longer be able to have their prescriptions covered by the provincial government program. Under OHIP+, people 24 years of age or younger were able to obtain a range of medication for free, paid by the government, whether or not they were eligible for coverage under a private plan.

The cost-cutting measure appears more than reasonable at first glance. Why should tax dollars pay for private corporations’ profits? They make enough money, and those tax dollars are needed elsewhere. Behind this reasonable façade, however, lies a policy change which will set Ontario back in terms of reproductive rights, trans rights and sexual health…”
Keep reading…

How a U.S. Supreme Court ruling could modernize Canada’s tax system

Doctoral candidate Ivan O. Ozai, The Conversation, 8 July 2018

“In the last few months, several countries have considered the idea of levying taxes on digital companies. But because these companies can operate from virtually anywhere, a digital tax would require updating old tax rules that only allow governments to tax companies that have a physical presence in the country.

The United States Supreme Court’s recent revision of a long-established jurisprudence is likely to influence digital tax discussions around the world. The court overturned a 26-year-old precedent and ruled that a state can require sales taxes from companies with no physical presence in the state…”
Keep reading…

Il est grand temps d’avoir une discussion sur le privilège blanc au Québec

Pierre-Alexandre Cardinal, doctorant en droit, LaPresse+, 7 juillet 2018

« SLĀV a finalement été retiré de l’affiche par les autorités du Festival international de jazz de Montréal mercredi dernier. Le spectacle avait déclenché la colère des communautés racisées montréalaises, qui appelaient à boycotter la pièce de Robert Lepage et de Betty Bonifassi le soir de la première. Les étendards de l’opinion médiatique et artistique québécoise se sont ensuite rapidement prononcés en opposition aux manifestants, en faisant largement outrage à l’autocritique, et en faveur d’une ‘liberté d’expression’ artistique qui couronnerait tout, y compris le privilège d’une population sur une autre… »
Lire la suite…

Une fracture idéologique atteint la Cour Suprême des États-Unis

Jose Mauricio Gaona, doctorant en droit, Émission 24/60 de Radio-Canada, 26 juin 2018

Le doctorant Jose Mauricio Gaona a été interviewé par l’émission 24/60 de Radio-Canada sur la fracture idéologique qui a atteint la Cour suprême des États-Unis, dont les juges ont approuvé à 5 contre 4 le décret anti-immigration de Donald Trump.
Visionner l’entrevue…

Democratic Blending: The New Model of Dictatorships in Latin America

DCL candidate Jose Mauricio Gaona, Columbia Journal of International Affairs SIPA, 12 June 2018

“Dictatorships in 21st century Latin America are increasingly using democracy as a tool to legitimize authority, consolidate power, and repress their citizens… modern dictatorships in Latin America use democracy not only to attain but also eventually to retain power and, in the process, legitimize their political authority. This phenomenon can be referred to as “democratic blending”: a masked transformation of democratic institutions, principles, and the rule of law that allows elected yet steadily authoritarian governments to benefit from the appearance of democracy while constructing the rules of a dictatorship.”
Keep reading…

Reconceiving Quebec’s Laws on Surrogate Motherhood

DCL candidate Stefanie Carsley, The Canadian Bar Review, 6 June 2018

“In September 2016, the Quebec government announced its intention to reform the Civil Code of Québec to recognize and further regulate surrogate motherhood. Quebec’s Minister of Justice indicated that in bringing forward these changes, the government will consider recommendations provided in a 2015 report by the Comité consultatif sur le droit de la famille (the Comité). This article explores the history, objectives, and effects of Quebec’s current legal responses to surrogacy and examines the strengths and weaknesses of the Comité’s proposed reforms…”
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Human Rights at the G7

DCL candidate Jose Mauricio Gaona, CTV News, 4 June 2018

Ahead of the G7 meeting, DCL candidate Jose Mauricio Gaona was interviewed by CTV News on how advocates would get their message heard.

Watch the interview…