Samreen Beg

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Source Publication

Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity, Graham Gee and Erika Rackley (eds.)


Judges--Selection and appointment; Canada


The purpose of this paper is to provide a high level overview of some of the issues and stumbling blocks Canada has encountered in building a diverse judiciary. Part 1 of the paper begins by providing a brief overview of the heterogeneous makeup of Canadian society against the homogenous makeup of the judiciary. This will provide a helpful backdrop from which to explore conceptual questions related to the question of why a diverse judiciary matters. Part 2 examines some of the historical questions and milestones in the judiciary related to diversity. Part 3 summarizes the judicial appointments processes and takes a look at Canada’s recent history related to judicial appointments and judicial diversity – specifically judicial appointments under Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government and recent moves by the new Liberal government led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The paper wraps up with our thoughts on reforms that might signal greater commitment to diversity and inclusion as essential elements of an effective and independent judiciary.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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