Sunday, May 22, 2011

British Columbia Law Institute Research Project on Family Status

The British Columbia Law Institute has launched a new research initiative to study the meaning of the ground of "family status" under the BC Human Rights Code.

Family status is a prohibited ground of discrimination under the Code but it is not given any precise definition. Across Canada, there have been different interpretations of the expression:

"In the face of recent confusing jurisprudence and the changing landscape of the family in BC, the objective of the BC Family Status Legal Research Project is to research and analyze the family status ground. The BCLI will publish a Discussion Paper that thoroughly reviews the legislation and jurisprudence in relation to the family status ground and describes the issues and problems with the family status ground in BC. If appropriate, the Discussion Paper will identify further legal research, law reform or legal education in this area that would benefit the public. Although the scope of this 1-year research project will be clarified in consultation with external project advisors, the project is intended to question whether patterns of interpretation reflect contemporary expansive notions of family and respect for diversity and capture the barriers to access to full participation in society faced by different kinds of families. The Discussion Paper will also consider the development of human rights jurisprudence over the years to reflect on the role of human rights codes in fostering equality for families. The paper is intended to serve as a resource for academics, advocates, practitioners and decision-makers as well as the general public."

The Institute has published a brief background paper on the issue.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 4:36 pm


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