Rights-Based Strategies to Address Homelessness and Poverty in Canada: The Constitutional Framework
Social Rights Advocacy Centre Working Paper, November 2012
74 Pages Posted: 20 Sep 2013
Date Written: November 1, 2012
This paper is the second part of a two-part research project that considers what the new paradigm of social rights and the re-unified system of human rights mean for the design and implementation of programs and strategies to address poverty and homelessness in Canada. The paper explores the extent to which a domestic constitutional framework exists for a rights-based approach to housing and anti-poverty strategies in Canada, compatible with, and informed by, the international human rights law and jurisprudence. Particular attention is paid to four Canadian constitutional provisions: 1) the commitment to provide public services of reasonable quality to all Canadians, under section 36 of the Constitution Act, 1982; the right to life, liberty, and security of the person, under section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms; the right to equal protection and equal benefit of the law, under section 15 of the Charter; and Canadian governments’ obligation, under section 1 of the Charter, to balance and limit rights in a manner that is reasonable and demonstrably justifiable.
Keywords: social rights, human rights, Canada, poverty, homelessness, constitution, rights-based, policy, anti-poverty, housing, international human rights, section 36, Charter of Rights, section 7, life, liberty, security, equality, section 15, section 1, Canadian, law
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