I hope you’re doing well.
As you probably already know, our first Défi de la Charte was a resounding success in spite of all the hurdles that we had to face.
If you haven’t been able to attend the final, you can watch it here.
We have recruited a new francophone Youth Leadership Team and what these young people are accomplishing is quite impressive!
That said, it is time to prepare for the next Defi de la Charte which will start later this Fall, and we need to write our scenario (the set of facts that form the basis for the legal arguments).
We have of course the possibility of translating a previous edition of the Charter Challenge. However, I really liked the fact that the subject of the pilot project was written directly in French by a bilingual legal assistant from the Court of Appeal.
I was wondering if this might be something that can interest any of you, or if you know someone who might be interested in this.
Of course, I am happy to discuss with you about what the scenario should look like. But to give you an idea of what we are looking for, here are a few elements:
A scenario should:
Be given in the form of a trial decision (because this program is pitched at the level of an appeal from a judicial decision, the scenario is rendered in the form of a judge’s written decision from a lower court).
Contain different Charter issues on appeal (2 to 4). Different issues can be related to the same section of the Charter. For example, a scenario could split a section 7 analysis into two separate issues by asking first if a law infringes upon life, liberty or security of the person and second, whether any such infringement is in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice. Often in a scenario in which a law is impugned, a section 1 analysis can be used as the final issue and when policing and criminal law are central, this can be true for exclusion of evidence under section 24(2).
Be balanced. Drafters should be advised that a good scenario has opportunities for both sides to “win” on some issues and to engage with sophisticated legal analysis so that they can develop and demonstrate high-quality research, thinking and communication skills.
Be sophisticated but not overly complex. Many teachers will be teaching some of the more well-known sections of the Charter, and these account for the vast majority of issues to have appeared in past Charter Challenges: 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 15 and 24.
Be relatively brief. A reasonable length for a scenario is in the range of 12-18 pages, excluding any appendixes.
As much as possible, we would like the topic of the screenplay to be one of the six topics selected by French-speaking students during the large survey that we distributed to schools last year.
Here are the six selected topics:
1. Violation of personal life following the search in the locker of a student in high school.
2. Are certain police practices contrary to the right to equality and the rights to life and security of racialized minorities?
3. Violation of the right to liberty following the prohibition of a pupil from coming to school without having been vaccinated.
4. Is a school board that tries to dissuade a student from starting a gay-straight alliance guilty of anti-LGBTQ discrimination?
5. Violation of the right to life, liberty and security of the person following the rejection of assisted suicide.
6. Is the right of Francophones outside Quebec to an educational experience in their language equivalent to that of the Anglophone majority a constitutional right?
Obviously, if there was a way to combine the topics, that would be particularly beneficial. For example, one could imagine a scenario that combines the issues raised in topics 1 and 2 or 1 and 4.
Anybody who is interested should contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
Thank you in advance for your help.
Looking forward to working with you!
Défi de la Charte coordinator.