Historical Significance Of The Canadian Constitution Act Of 1982

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Significance of Constitution Act of 1982

Canada has earned the title of being a peacemaking nation which is well deserved and known in the international community. It supports equality among everyone, protects and guarantees the rights of its citizens, and is considered a role model for protection of human rights around the world. However in Canada’s history, it’s society was once filled with prejudice and there were many discriminatory laws. This was evident in many historical events such as the mistreatment of the First Nations people, and the unfair Chinese Immigration Acts. Those laws had a very negative significant impact on the people. Considering the profound influence it had on our country, it is important to recognize that all …show more content…

The Canadian Constitution of 1982 protects the rights of citizens, such as their individual rights. It ensures that the laws affecting the individual rights conform to the Charter. In order to protect the individual rights of a person such as privacy, the act also changed the nature of criminal investigations by limiting police powers. There were many Charter cases that systematized these changes. The best example for this change was the David Oakes case in 1986, who was charged for selling narcotics. At that time, the law speculated that anyone that was carrying drugs was going to eventually sell them - which was a serious crime. However, David Oakes had claimed that he wanted to consume them instead of selling it. His lawyer had argued that the law had violated the Charter’s right to be innocent until proven guilty. The Supreme Court agreed with this and declared that the law was unconstitutional. Ever since this incident, no one can be assumed to be selling drugs just because a person has it in their possession (Flaherty). Therefore, this was a good example of how the Constitution Act of 1982 protects the individual rights of its …show more content…

Because of the Charter, the role of the courts had been raised. This allowed the judges to make social and legal changes through the interpretation of the Charter’s meaning. There is a lot of criticism on this issue, because many people believe that all the power is in the hand of the judicial branch and the Parliament and Legislature don’t have much authority ("The Courts and Parliament: Balancing the Roles"). This was a very significant change in our nation’s legal history because before the Charter of Rights & Freedoms, the federal and provincial governments were allowed to infringe on Canadian Rights and freedoms. However, when the Charter was put in place, it prevented them to do

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