Landmark Case: Equality Rights, the Indian Act, and the Canadian Bill of Rights – R. v. Drybones
Each OJEN Landmark Case includes a case summary, classroom discussion questions and worksheets that encourage students to explore both the legal and societal importance of the case.
In 1970, in the case of R. v. Drybones, the majority of the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) considered s. 94(b) of the Indian Act. This section made it an offence for an Indian to be intoxicated off a reserve. In effect, the section singled out Indians because there was no similar legislation penalizing intoxicated non-Indians.
The SCC ruled that this section contravened the equality guarantee in s. 1(b) of the Canadian Bill of Rights and struck down the offending section.
Date Produced: 2008