TWU law school challenged again

The Victoria lawyer challenging the Law Society of B.C. approval of the Trinity Western University law school says he has more than 1,100 letters of support.

Michael Mulligan was using a clause in the law society that says if more than five per cent of members (550 required) submit a request, it can trigger a special meeting.

He wants a revote on the law school approval by the society which regulats the province’s 11,000 lawyers and law schools.

“On April 11, 2014, a majority of the Benchers [executive members] of the Law Society voted to approve the application by Trinity Western University despite the covenant that discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation,” he wrote.

He wants the society to reconsider its accreditation because of TWU’s requirement that students and staff sign a Community Covenant. It includes a provision prohibiting “sexual intimacy that violates the sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman.”

“The discriminatory principles reflected in the Trinity Western University covenant would appear to be inconsistent with one of the core principles reflected in the Barristers’ and Solicitors’ oath: that barristers and solicitors uphold the rights and freedoms of all persons according to the laws of Canada and British Columbia,” Mulligan wrote.

TWU president Bob Kuhn said the school has been reviewed by all the regulatory bodies and received approvals.

The TWU law school has also received approvals from the B.C. Ministry of Advanced Education and the Federation of Law Societies of Canada.

Recently lawyers for openly gay Vancouver park board commissioner Trevor Loke filed a B.C. Supreme Court petition to sue the provincial government for approving the law school.

Loke, who identifies himself as a Christian, claims the minister’s decision fosters a discriminatory policy, denies him access to one of the four law schools in the province, and violates his rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The province has until April 29 to submit its response about the Loke lawsuit to the court.

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