The Upside of Dissent in Equality Jurisprudence

(2013) 63 Supreme Court Law Review (2d) 111

30 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2014

See all articles by Carissima Mathen

Carissima Mathen

University of Ottawa - Common Law Section

Date Written: July 1, 2013

Abstract

It is impossible to imagine Canadian constitutional law without dissent. Dissent fulfils a variety of functions, and takes diverse forms. While to many, dissent negatively affects a court's authority, this paper focuses on its positive aspects. After a general discussion of how judicial dissent has manifested in cases arising under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the paper considers the particular relationship between dissenting opinions and the development of constitutional equality jurisprudence. Using several examples and culminating with a recent, highly fractured Supreme Court decision, it suggests that, in the evolution of equality law, dissent is associated with richer reasoning.

Keywords: Canadian constitutional law, Canadian Charter of Rights, Supreme Court of Canada, judicial dissent, equality, section 15, section 7, judicial review

Suggested Citation

Mathen, Carissima, The Upside of Dissent in Equality Jurisprudence (July 1, 2013). (2013) 63 Supreme Court Law Review (2d) 111, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2374963

Carissima Mathen (Contact Author)

University of Ottawa - Common Law Section ( email )

57 Louis Pasteur Street
Ottawa, K1N 6N5
Canada

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