No Victory in Government’s Re-Working of Canada Summer Jobs Application

Toronto, ON December 7, 2018 – The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) responded today to the revised Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) application process, as announced by federal Labour minister Patty Hajdu. In brief, the new application process remains sadly deficient. The government has moved from an attestation requirement, or forced speech, by having to check a box in support of its views on “reproductive health”, which included unfettered access to abortion at all stages or its views on gender ideology, to a new requirement. It now seeks applicants to confirm that it will not engage in certain “proposed activities” in respect of otherwise legitimate beliefs with which the current government disagrees. The Minister’s new demands continue a suppression of viewpoints not shared by the government, for which funding will continue to be denied to groups that disagree. The federal Liberals are effectively establishing a “bubble zone” to prevent funding to organizations who do not share its unfettered pro-abortion position. The government maintains a false impression that there is a “right to safe and legal abortion”. It does not exist as part of either the Charter of Rights and Freedoms or in case law. While Labour minister Patty Hajdu proposed to accommodate faith-based groups, that accommodation effectively shuts out their core positions as unacceptable. This is no victory for the unborn. The government has simply changed the eligibility criteria so that organizations will be denied funding if they stand for prolife positions. The new wording of the 2019 application makes clear that grants will not be allocated if used to “undermine or restrict the exercise of rights legally protected in Canada.”...

Filmmaker Kevin Dunn is the CCRL’s Guest Speaker at our AGM on December 12, 2018 in Toronto

The following notice is of particular interest to those in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). On Wednesday, December 12, we will be having Mass at 6:30 pm in the Crypt Chapel of St. Michael’s Cathedral Basilica, 200 Church Street, M5B 1Z2. The CCRL’s Annual General Meeting will follow in the atrium.   Our guest speaker is Catholic filmmaker Kevin Dunn. Kevin Dunn is the director and producer of The Euthanasia Deception (2016). His most recent film is Fatal fLaws: Legalizing Assisted Death (2018).   Kevin Dunn’s presentation will include excerpts from both films. All are invited to this event. Please spread the word on social media and please inform your friends. Kindly RSVP at ccrl@ccrl.ca or by calling (416) 466-8244. We humbly ask a donation from those in attendance who are able to contribute. About the CCRL Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) (www.ccrl.ca) assists in creating conditions within which Catholic teachings can be better understood, cooperates with other organizations in defending civil rights in Canada, and opposes defamation and discrimination against Catholics on the basis of their beliefs. The CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization with a large nationwide membership base. The CCRL is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members. To donate to the CCRL, please click here. For further information: Christian Domenic Elia, PhD CCRL Executive Director 416-466-8244...

The CCRL will Intervene at the Ontario Court of Appeal in Physicians’ Conscience Rights Case

Toronto, ON November 15, 2018 – The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) is pleased to announce that on October 1 our application to intervene in the appeal of the Ontario Divisional Court decision in the case CMDS et al v. CPSO was accepted. This case concerns the conscience and religious rights of Ontario doctors who refuse to participate in morally objectionable procedures, such as euthanasia or abortion. The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) stipulated an “effective referral” regime requiring that they ensure provision of such services by another doctor, which we argue makes them complicit in the provision of the objectionable procedure. On November 13, our factum, prepared in conjunction with the Faith and Freedom Alliance (FFA) and the Protection of Conscience Project was submitted. Click here to view it. The League’s submission is focused on what has been a relatively ignored provision of the Charter, freedom of conscience, as distinct from freedom of religion, for which the appellants and other groups are focused. About the CCRL Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) (www.ccrl.ca) assists in creating conditions within which Catholic teachings can be better understood, cooperates with other organizations in defending civil rights in Canada, and opposes defamation and discrimination against Catholics on the basis of their beliefs. The CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization with a large nationwide membership base. The CCRL is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members. To donate to the CCRL, please click here. For further information: Christian Domenic Elia, PhD CCRL Executive Director 416-466-8244 @CCRLtweets  ...

Trinity Western University Drops the Mandatory Requirement of the Community Covenant

Toronto, ON August 16, 2018 – The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) acknowledges the Trinity Western University (TWU) decision to no longer require students to sign its Community Covenant as an inevitable compromise that removes a point of contention that will now hopefully lead to the actual pursuit of a Christian law school. The TWU board of governors released the following statement effective August 9 In furtherance of our desire to maintain TWU as a thriving community of Christian believers that is inclusive of all students wishing to learn from a Christian viewpoint and underlying philosophy, the Community Covenant will no longer be mandatory as of the 2018-19 academic year with respect to admission of students to, or continuation of students at, the University. Robert G. Kuhn, president of TWU, stated that TWU, “will remain a Biblically-based, mission-focused, academically excellent University, fully committed to our foundational evangelical Christian principles.” He noted that staff and faculty would still be required to comply with the Community Covenant. The League notes that the change to the TWU policy comes following the 7-2 decision of the Supreme Court on June 15, upholding decisions of two law societies in refusing accreditation of future TWU law school graduates, based on the Community Covenant’s assertions on traditional marriage. It is hoped that TWU will proceed eventually with its application to open a law school, which will serve both Christian students and other stakeholders, by infusing the study of law with Christian witness, as in other professional faculties at TWU. The addition of law school focused on pro bono and smaller legal practice environments would fill a...

The CCRL Files Submission to Health Canada’s Public Consultation on Palliative Care

Toronto, ON July 17, 2018 – The Catholic Civil Rights League filed a submission today with Health Canada in response to their public consultation “a framework for palliative care in Canada”. According to the federal government this framework “will help support improved access to palliative care and will provide a useful reference point across jurisdictions to help identify opportunities, address gaps, and share promising practices”. Our complete submission is as follows: A Framework for Palliative Care – Submission of the Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) advocates in support of law and policy compatible with a Christian and reasoned understanding of human nature and the common good, and in particular, law and policy that promotes fundamental Christian morals and values, including the sanctity of life and respect for human dignity. Palliative Care Remains Limited as Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia Expands Thank you for the opportunity to make the following submission. The CCRL has previously argued that the regime of assisted suicide enshrined in law by the Liberal government had failed to address or take into account the inadequacy of palliative care as a treatment option in Canada. Prior to assisted suicide and euthanasia several studies indicated the crisis in Canada regarding the lack of comprehensive palliative care. For example, according to a study in 2007, only 16% to 30% of Canadians who died in that decade had access to hospice based palliative and end-of-life care services – depending on where they lived in Canada, according to the Canadian Institute for Health Information, Health Care Use at the End of Life in Western Canada (Ottawa:...

Supreme Court Finds Religious Discrimination Against Trinity Western, Yet Still Refuses to Permit Accreditation of its Proposed Law School

Toronto, ON June 15, 2018 – The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) notes the irony in today’s majority decision. A proposed Christian law school, with a stated emphasis to educate lawyers in the charitable and non-profit sectors, has been denied accreditation of its graduates by two provincial law societies. The court’s ruling limits diversity of legal education options of a previously approved law school, by expanding the notion of a public interest test over enumerated grounds for religious freedom in the Charter. And while 8 of 9 judges recognized an infringement of TWU’s rights to religious freedom, the 7-2 majority found that the law societies were “justified” in making a “balanced” decision not to accredit the previously approved law school. In effect, the Supreme Court has allowed the non-accreditation of a single proposed Christian law school, which proposed to add 60 new spaces for potential law students to gain entry to the profession, on the basis that it imposed an “inequitable barrier on entry to the profession”, without explaining how any existing available law school spaces were affected. The minority decision is highly critical of the majority. The decision of the law societies should have been focused on whether proposed graduates met competence and ethical standards, for which there was no issue. The reliance on a referendum to make decisions affecting constitutionally protected rights needed the further explanation or treatment by the law society benchers, which was not provided. Amorphous and undefined Charter “values” cannot be seen as overruling what two judges described as a profound interference with TWU’s religious freedoms, and was contrary to the state’s duty of...