Same-Sex Marriage

My partner Carolyn Moffat and I (Carolyn Rowe) decided to participate in the Ontario test-case on marriage for same-sex spouses. This past spring, we drove down to Toronto’s City Hall where we applied for a marriage license. We were not granted or denied our marriage license, but were asked to wait for further clarification. The Clerk at the Marriage Registry Office is now seeking direction from the Superior Court of Justice by way of an application.…

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Transgender and Women’s Equality Rights

How should much-needed human rights protection be extended to transgendered people? Existing grounds that have been invoked include sex, sexual orientation and disability. Some advocates have suggested that the addition of ‘gender identity’ would better protect trans people. However, the idea of self-identification being the only criteria for protection under the ground of “gender identity”…

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Challenging the Nuclear Family, Protecting Lesbian Mothers: A Legal Catch-22

Despite the enormous increase in the number of lesbians choosing to parent, as well as the numerous legal victories they have achieved in recent years, lesbian mothers remain legally vulnerable. Non-biological mothers in particular are subject to the whim of both biological mothers and the courts, while the legal status of known sperm donors remains…

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Marriage, Homophobia, and Substantive Equality

Marriage, Homophobia, and Substantive Equality Mariage, homophobie et égalité véritable The unanimous decision of the Supreme Court of Canada in Reference re Same-Sex Marriage came as no surprise to anybody – or at least to those familiar with the Court’s obligations in interpreting and applying Charter rights and freedoms, and the relative ease that it…

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Should Feminists Care About Equal Marriage for Same-Sex Couples?

Equal marriage for same sex couples developed as the wedge social issue in the June 2004 federal election. We witnessed Liberal politicians proudly waving the rainbow flag, a sharp contrast to a year earlier when most of them had trouble saying “lesbian and gay” without first interjecting an “um” or taking in a little breathe…

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Same-Sex Marriage

Not allowing lesbians to marry sends the message that lesbian relationships are not valuable or worthy of support. Lesbians want the ability to marry to obtain the benefits of marriage and also to change that historical message of exclusion. They also want to be recognized as mothers and co-parents. Briefs on Same-Sex Marriage and Families…

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National Consultation on Transgender and Women’s Substantive Equality

NAWL organized a national consultation on transgender and women’s substantive equality rights, held in Ottawa on February 22 and 23, 2003. The consultation drew representatives from rape crisis centres, women’s equality-seeking groups, unions, government, transgender and transsexual (trans) advocates, and other interested individuals from across Canada. The specific objective for the weekend was to lay…

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Same-Sex Hearings

At the hearings held in Sudbury on April 9, 2003, NAWL appeared before the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights to present our views on the question of whether the federal government should recognize same-sex marriages. We urged the committee members not to be swayed by political and social prejudice and stereotyping born of…

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Transgender Human Rights and Women’s Substantive Equality / L’égalité réelle pour les femmes

Transgender Human Rights and Women’s Substantive Equality L’égalité réelle pour les femmes et les personnes transgenres The aim of this discussion paper is to engage equality advocates on specific questions of relevance to law reform initiatives pertaining to the relation between transgender and women’s substantive equality rights. It proposes a framework for the discussions that…

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Surrey Book Banning Case

“Tolerance is always age-appropriate,” Supreme Court rules. Egale Canada delighted at victory for diverse families in the classroom Egale Canada reacted with delight at the release of the Supreme Court decision in the Surrey Book Banning case. By a 7-2 majority, Canada’s highest court unequivocally rejected the Surrey School Board’s attempt to ban from the…

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Workshop on Transgender Human Rights and Women’s Substantive Equality

Workshop conducted by the NAWL Working Group on Transgender Issues at NAWL’s 14th Biennial Conference Through a number of successful cases — specifically involving male-to-female transsexuals — provincial courts and human rights tribunals have acknowledged discrimination against transgendered persons, although specific protections have yet to be encoded in law. Developing appropriate analysis and strategies for…

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Equality Coalition to Present Agruments in Brockie Case

Cet article est disponible uniquement en anglais. In December 2001, a coalition of 12 equality-seeking groups in Ontario presented arguments in Brillinger v. Brockie, a case before the Ontario Court of Justice. The case was on appeal from the Ontario Board of Inquiry (Human Rights Code). Scott Brockie, the owner of Imaging Excellence, a Toronto…

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Late Breaking News – Equal Marriage

Cet article est disponible uniquement en anglais. A disappointing judgement denying the right of same sex couples to marry was issued by the Supreme Court of British Columbia on October 2, 2001 (EGALE Canada Inc. et al vs Attorney General of Canada et al. 2001 BCSC 1365.) See the judgement at http://www.courts.gov.bc.ca/jdb-txt/SC/01/2001BCBS1365.htm See EGALE’s press…

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Some Reflections on an International Experience: A Report from the CHRF International Human Rights Training Program

Cet article est disponible uniquement en anglais. Introduction This summer I represented NAWL at the Canadian Human Rights Foundation’s (CHRF) 22nd annual International Human Rights Training Program (IHRTP) in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, just outside of Montreal. (See the CHRF’s website at http://www.chrf.ca/english/general/files/master_eng.htm) For three weeks, 120 human rights advocates from over 60 different countries stayed in the…

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On Losing Lesbian Rights

Cet article est disponible uniquement en anglais. While the Fourth World Conference of Women held in Beijing in 1995 fell short of formally recognising the rights of lesbians and gay men, many United Nations bodies and programs – such as the UN Commission on Human Rights, the Human Rights Committee, the High Commission for Refugees,…

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