No Discrimination Against Long-Term Care Residents in Elder Advocates of Alberta Case

By: Jennifer Koshan and Jonnette Watson Hamilton

PDF Version: No Discrimination Against Long-Term Care Residents in Elder Advocates of Alberta Case

Case Commented On: Elder Advocates of Alberta Society v Alberta, 2018 ABQB 37 (CanLII)

Our colleague Lorian Hardcastle recently posted a comment on the Elder Advocates of Alberta Society case, where a class of long-term care residents brought a claim against the Alberta government challenging its ability to charge accommodation fees in their facilities. As she noted, the plaintiffs were unsuccessful in their claims of unjust enrichment, negligence, and contract. The plaintiffs also argued that the accommodation charges were discriminatory on the basis of age and mental / physical disability, contrary to section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Justice June Ross also dismissed this argument, and her reasons on the section 15 claim will be the focus of this post. Continue reading

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Posted in Constitutional, Health Law | Leave a comment

Tracing the Likeness of Colten Boushie in the Law Classroom

By: Lisa A. Silver

PDF Version: Tracing the Likeness of Colten Boushie in the Law Classroom

On January 29, 2018, the nation’s gaze was decidedly fixed on Battleford, Saskatchewan where the second-degree murder trial of Gerald Stanley was commencing. From that first day of jury selection to the present, there is a general sense of shock, outrage and disbelief from so many corners of our country. In the legal community, there is much debate on the legal issues arising from the trial as well as concerns with jury selection, the ethical duties of jurors, and the presence of discriminatory practices that are embedded in our justice system. Many voices are being heard that are challenging the traditional common law perspective. Several of these voices are from the Indigenous community who are speaking from their heart and from their own personal experiences. As part of this reaction, the legal community is debating these issues through a variety of lenses and from all sides. Like most everyone touched by this case, I have read these accounts with interest. As a lawyer who practiced criminal law and now teaches it, my initial reaction is typically lawyerly: to parse the charge to the jury for legal errors, to debate the efficacy of peremptory challenges and to call for change in our justice system. But the overwhelming message, and in my view, the message which needs to be presented in the law classroom is not just one promoting a legalistic analysis but one providing a broader more meaningful message framing this case and this verdict as part of an overarching theme or subtext, which can be traced in the law classroom. Continue reading

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Posted in Aboriginal, Criminal, Legal Education | Leave a comment

An Ethical Jury? Reflections on the Acquittal of Gerald Stanley for the Murder/Manslaughter of Colten Boushie

By: Alice Woolley

PDF Version: An Ethical Jury? Reflections on the Acquittal of Gerald Stanley for the Murder/Manslaughter of Colten Boushie

We understand the ethical duties of lawyers and judges in a criminal trial – what they ought to do, what their office requires of them. Sure, we argue about the details (e.g., me on prosecutors), but in general we know what defence lawyers, prosecutors and judges ought to do. Yet as shown by Gerald Stanley’s acquittal by a jury on charges of murder and manslaughter after his admitted killing of Colten Boushie, lawyers and judges are not the only people relevant to the functioning of a criminal trial. Juries also hear evidence and decide outcomes. Continue reading

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ABlawg Celebrates 10 Years

By: Jennifer Koshan, Amy Matychuk, and Other ABlawg Contributors

PDF Version: ABlawg Celebrates 10 Years

ABlawg is celebrating our tenth anniversary this month. Anniversaries provide a good opportunity to reflect and share, so what follows are some statistics and favourite moments, and an ask of our readers for your thoughts on ABlawg’s first ten years. Continue reading

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Posted in Blogs and Websites | 1 Comment

Minister Sharpens the Wetland Policy’s Teeth, and Beaver Pond is Spared

By: Arlene Kwasniak

PDF Version: Minister Sharpens the Wetland Policy’s Teeth, and Beaver Pond is Spared

Decisions Commented On: Brookman and Tulick v Director, South Saskatchewan Region, Alberta Environment and Parks, re: KGL Constructors, A Partnership (24 November 2017), Appeal Nos. 17-047 and 17-050-R (AEAB), EAB Report, Minister`s Order, and Minister’s Reasons)

The physical setting relating to the 111 page EAB Report (ER),  Minister’s Order (MO), and Minister’s Reasons (MR), includes the geologically and ecologically unique Weaselhead Flats Natural Environment Park in south Calgary (containing the only delta in the City), the Tsuut’ina First Nation Reserve, a series of wetlands that drain into the Park and the Glenmore Reservoir, and the long-time materializing Calgary Ring Road. The complex and sometimes intense fact situation may be summarized as follows: Continue reading

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Posted in Environmental, Water Law | Leave a comment