Trinity Western University (TWU) said it was “optimistic Canada’s highest court will arrive at a decision that supports the freedom of all faith groups and other minorities in Canada” following two days of legal arguments at the Supreme Court of Canada in Ottawa concerning a proposed faith-based law school at the Langley campus.
The case involved two appeals concerning accreditation of the TWU law school, one involving a decision of the Law Society of British Columbia (LSBC) and the other a decision of the Law Society of Ontario (LSO).
At issue is the university community covenant that requires students and staff to abstain from non-heterosexual relationships, something critics say violates the Canadian charter of rights.
Both the B.C. and Ontario bodies refused to recognize the proposed law school.
In BC, the decision was overturned by the lower courts, while in Ontario, the LSO’s refusal to accredit was upheld.
The last time the university went to court over the covenant, it won a 2001 case over its teacher training program when the Supreme Court of Canada ruled there was no evidence to suggest that the religious views of TWU graduates would lessen their competence to practice their profession in Canada’s pluralistic society.”
During the two days of arguments that ended on Friday, the high court heard multiple submissions from people on both sides of the law school issue.
Outside court, TWU president Bob Kuhn said the case was about more than just a law school.
“It is about freedom for all faith communities and other minorities in Canada,” Kuhn said.
The court’s decision is expected within the next several months.
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