Is it important only to legal scholars that the Supreme Court decided Carter v. Canada (Attorney General), — the landmark, assisted dying case — under the wrong Charter provision? In this case, when the Court struck down the Criminal Code provision that makes it a crime to assist another person to end their life (section 241(b)), it found an unjustified violation of Charter section 7. This provision guarantees that no one will be “deprived” of their “life, liberty or security of the person”, except “in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.” The Court did not consider whether the impugned law violated the principle of disability equality guaranteed by Charter section 15. This section guarantees the constitutional right to equality “before and under the law”, and to “the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination” on various grounds, including “mental or physical disability”.
"Carter v. Canada (Attorney General), The Constitutional Attack on Canada’s Ban on Assisted Dying: Missing an Obvious Chance to Rule on the Charter’s Disability Equality Guarantee."
The Supreme Court Law Review: Osgoode’s Annual Constitutional Cases Conference
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