This morning, Egale Honorary Advisory Board Member Doug Elliott presented to the federal Justice Committee to support the reinstatement of the Court Challenges Program (CCP). Abolished in 2006, the CCP was an important national program that funded the legal efforts of underrepresented groups in Canada attempting to advance equality rights guaranteed under Canada’s constitution. The Harper government discontinued the program, citing the need for fiscal cutbacks, despite the vast civic returns the program reared in comparison to its relatively low monetary demands.

Egale ardently supports the program’s reinstatement.  When it existed, the CCP made significant contributions to cases that reduced discrimination based on sexual orientation. The revival of the CCP would add new depth to jurisprudence in Canada, enabling more meaningful representation of historically disenfranchised communities within the courts, such as trans and gender diverse individuals. Egale believes the CCP to be a fair option for marginalized groups in Canada, and believes that it should be revived with a raised funding cap, and be expanded to support cases based on merit rather than jurisdiction.