TORONTO, Aug. 26, 2004 – The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) today said it is disappointed with the choice of two judges known for their support of same sex marriage to fill vacancies on the Supreme Court of Canada.

Justice Rosalie Abella and Justice Louise Charron, both from the Ontario Court of Appeal, have been selected by Prime Minister Paul Martin to fill the Ontario vacancies created by the early departures of Louise Arbour and Frank Iacobucci.

“We don’t question the qualifications of these justices for the role, but the selection of candidates known for their support of same-sex marriage just before the Supreme Court is expected to rule on the question is a real concern to our members and indeed to all Canadians who support the traditional one man-one woman definition of marriage,” said Philip Horgan, a Toronto lawyer and vice president of CCRL. “These appointments guarantee the near-unanimous support of the court for same sex marriage, and the stifling of dissenting opinion, even though that opinion is held by a majority of Canadians. Nevertheless, we plan to go forward with our submission on the Supreme Court’s reference.”

Link: Resources on marriage from CCRL

CCRL is part of the Interfaith Coalition for Marriage that has participated in court challenges in Ontario, BC and Quebec to defend the traditional definition of marriage. The coalition has also been granted leave to be heard in the upcoming federal Supreme Court Reference, which is expected to begin Oct. 6.
In the meantime, CCRL urges Canadians to express their support for the traditional definition of marriage to their MPs. The League will soon launch a new website with a petition in support of the traditional definition of marriage, and generated 25,000 postcards to the prime minister on the subject last spring.


For further information contact: Joanne McGarry