Trinity Western University

2015 News

BC hearing for TWU School of Law begins Aug. 24

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On Monday August 24, the judicial review of the Law Society of British Columbia (LSBC) decision, which refused accreditation of future Trinity Western University School of Law graduates, will commence at the Vancouver Law Courts on 800 Smithe St., Vancouver. The hearing, which is open to the public, is scheduled to run for five days from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a break between 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m.

During this time, Chief Justice Hinkson will hear the arguments for and against the LSBC’s decision against allowing future TWU law school graduates to practise in BC.At stake is more than just the right of TWU graduates to practise law, but whether people of faith are to be restricted in their right to associate in community and to fully participate in Canadian society.

The recent Supreme Court of Nova Scotia decision involving almost identical facts describes the conflict between TWU and law societies as one of balancing Charter rights. In that case, Justice Campbell said, “I have concluded that the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society did not have the authority to do what it did. I have also concluded that even if it did have that authority it did not exercise it in a way that reasonably considered the concerns for religious freedom and liberty of conscience.” While the Nova Scotia decision is now under appeal, it has set an important precedent in protection of freedoms for all religious communities in Canada. TWU is confident that the BC Courts will come to the same conclusion in the LSBC case.

Interveners in BC include the Canadian Council of Christian Charities; Christian Legal Fellowship; Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms; Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada; Evangelical Fellowship of Canada and Christian Higher Education Canada; Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver, Catholic Civil Rights League and Faith and Freedom Alliance; and Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Canada.

TWU School of Law Executive Director Earl Phillips will attend the hearings at the Vancouver courthouse and will be available for media interviews. Daily summaries of the proceedings will be posted on the TWU School of Law Blog. For live tweets during the hearing, follow @TWULawSchool.

Hear from Phillips in this video series on why there is a need for a law school at Trinity Western. Also, hear the story of TWU alumna and University of Toronto law student Jessie Legaree about why she, as a Christian, wants to be a lawyer.

Trinity Western University vs. Law Society of British Columbia (LSBC)
Date: August 24-28, 2015
Time: 10 am – 12:30 pm; 2 – 4 pm
Location: Vancouver Law Courts, 800 Smithe St., Vancouver, BC

  • Last Updated on August 20th, 2015 at 5:02pm
  • Author: Jennifer Watton
  • Email: media@twu.ca
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