Status of Canadian Marriage Cases

Details about Parliament's Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights - marriage hearings (2003)

See legal items from 2005

See legal items from 2004

See legal items from 2003

See legal items from 2001-2002

 

 

"The Federal Government has the responsibility to exert its leadership and to do what's right so that all Canadians, no matter their sexual orientation, are equal before the law."
The Canadian Human Rights Commission, July 23, 2002
CHRC Press Release

 

 

"There are many gay and lesbian Canadians living today in long-term committed relationships, caring for each other, and raising families together. They are entitled to respect and dignity and should be afforded the same recognition in law as opposite-sex couples."
2001 Annual Report

Canadian Human Rights Commission

 

Link to Registered Domestic Partnership overview

 

 

Link to "No to Bill S-9"

 

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Legal - Canada - Items from 2001-2002

July 30, 2002

Public Service Alliance of Canada

Call on Government to End Legal Battle

Link to Public Service Alliance of CanadaThe Public Service Alliance of Canada strongly condemns the federal government's decision to appeal the July 12, 2002 Ontario Divisional Court's decision on same-sex marriages, a press release from PSAC says.

"We're disappointed that the federal government has cosen to prolong the discrimination suffered by same-sex couples," said PSAC National President Nycole Turmell, "when they should be taking the lead in ensuring equality and fairness for all people in Canada."

PSAC represents 150,000 workers. It has been fighting for non-discriminatory marriage leaves in contract talks with the federal Treasury Board, impacting 90,000 federal public sector workers.

Link to report from Vancouver Pride 2002 - Equal Marriage  MarchThanks to PSAC for taking a public stand and for working to end marriage discrimination. A representative from PSAC's British Columbia region initiated the invitation to this year's Vancouver pride parade.

Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell


July 23, 2002

Same-sex Marriage a Reality
Canadian Human Rights Commission

Link to the Canadian Human Rights CommissionIn a statement titled "Society must recognize the reality of same-sex couples in the definition of marriage", the Canadian Human Rights Commission "applauds the decision of the Ontario Superior Court allowing for same-sex marriages."

"Same-sex couples are entitled to respect and dignity as all other Canadians," said Anne Adams, Acting Chief Commissioner. "Much progress has been made in the recognition of human rights of gays and lesbians over the past decade. Recognizing the reality of same-sex couples in the definition of marriage is a symbol of respect and should be a priority for our society ... The Federal Government has the responsibility to exert its leadership and to do what's right so that all Canadians, no matter their sexual orientation, are equal before the law."

CHRC Press Release
CHRC - An Internet site is ordered to cease hate messages against gays


April 17, 2002

20th Anniversary of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

Link to "The Charter - Its Impact"When we were married on January 14, 2001, at the Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto, our wedding party all wore red roses in honour of Canada's late prime minister, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, who's fondness for wearing a red rose in his lapel was well-known. The tribute was to acknowledge his role in decriminalizing homosexuality and leaving a legacy for Canada, built on tolerance and inclusion - the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Our marriage case, in Ontario court, is based on the principles layed out in the Charter, and precedents argued in previous Charter cases. As we go forward through the courts, we pause to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Charter, and reflect upon its legacy

The Charter - Its Impact

Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell



March 21, 2002

Canadian Human Rights Commission calls on Government to End Marriage Discrimination

March 21, 2002 - The CHRC became the latest agency to endorse marriage for same-sex couples. The Commission was established to make the 1977 Canadian Human Rights Act "work for the benefit of all Canadians".

In its year-end report, released March 21, 2002, the CHRC said much progress had been made to combat discrimination based on sexual orientation, however "one major issue remains to be resolved: marriage."

The CHRC said that it agrees with the Law Commission of Canada findings that the government must end marriage discrimination. The Canadian Human Rights Commission said:

"It recognizes and respects that for many, marriage is a sensitive issue bound with deeply felt religious beliefs and cultural practices. It is, nevertheless, also a reality that there are many gay and lesbian Canadians living today in long-term committed relationships, caring for each other, and raising families together. They are entitled to respect and dignity and should be afforded the same recognition in law as opposite-sex couples."

It is time for the Canadian Government to listen to its own advisors and agencies and put an end to marriage discrimination now. Stop the waste of human and financial resources. Stop collaborating with spiritual abusers and hate mongers. Start supporting all Canadian families with equality.

Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell

Read the CHRC same-sex marriage statement

Read the CHRC 2001 Annual Report



December 21, 2001

The Law Commission of Canada recommends "that Parliament and provincial/territorial legislatures move toward repealing legislative restrictions on marriages between persons of the same sex."

Link to Read the Commission's Recommendations


October 29, 2001

Mr. Svend Robinson, the Member of Parliament for Burnaby-Douglas BC, asked the House of Commons to hear the second reading of Bill C-264 before sending it off to committee for study and amendment if necessary. The bill, known as the Marriage Capacity Act simply states that "a marriage between two persons is not invalid by reason only that they are of the same sex”.

Below is a transcript of the debate that went on during the second reading of the bill. Prior to the debate, we had written to Mr. Robinson to thank him for his continuing outstanding work on behalf of equal rights for same-sex couples. Mr. Robinson, who has been very supportive throughout our effort to have our marriage registered, responded with a copy of the transcript of the debate:

Click here for speeches made on the Marriage Capacity Act


Read a selection of comments from our mail.Link to our media coverage of related issues.