A Respectful Distance: Appellate Courts Consider Religious Motivation of Public Figures in Homosexual Equality Discourse - The Cases of Chamberlain and Trinity Western University [Case Comment]
U.B.C. Law Review, Vol. 35, pp. 511-538, 2002
28 Pages Posted: 11 Mar 2011
Date Written: 2002
In the decisions of the B.C. Court of Appeal in Chamberlain v. Surrey School District No. 36 (2000) and the Supreme Court of Canada in Trinity Western University v. College of Teachers (2001), the courts allowed religiously-based "moral positions" held by would-be teachers and public officials to trump the interests of equal rights protection, in particular that of gays and lesbians.
The author examines the ways in which the religious arguments were made (and accepted) in order to achieve this result. The author asserts that the decisions raise troubling questions about the extent to which courts are really willing to go to protect equality in the gay and lesbian context.
Keywords: Canada, Homosexuality, Religion, Sexual orientation, Discrimination
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