Canada, Senate Debates, “Motion for an Address to Her Majesty the Queen—Reference to Supreme Court of Canada”, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess (9 April 1981)

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Date: 1981-04-09
By: Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Canada, Senate Debates, 32nd Parl, 1st Sess, 1981 at 2270.
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SENATE DEBATES — April 9, 1981

[Page 2270]



Hon. Jacques Flynn (Leader of the Opposition): Honourable senators, I believe this question was put yesterday to the Leader of the Government, and I am repeating it in the hope he might have a reply today. In the other place the reference to the Supreme Court of Canada seems to be on the appeal from the judgments of both the Manitoba Court of Appeal and the Newfoundland Court of Appeal. There is no indication that, if the decision of the Quebec Court of Appeal is rendered before the hearing of those other appeals by the Supreme Court of Canada, it will be included, or if the Government of Canada is to submit questions to the Supreme Court of Canada which might not be included in the references by the Government of Newfoundland and the Government of Manitoba.

In case a decision is rendered by the Quebec Court of Appeal, is it the intention to try to have a decision of the Supreme Court of Canada which would solve all the problems related to the constitutional package?

Hon. Raymond J. Perrault (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, as I stated yesterday, I hope to bring a detailed statement on the subject to the chamber as soon as possible. However, it is my understanding that the distinguished Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada will be meeting with counsel to discuss the issues that the court should deal with. lt is also my understanding that it will be the intention to have considered as wide a range of subjects as possible. However, it is not the intention of the government to proceed, under section 55 of the Supreme Court Act, to refer the proposals on the Constitution to the Supreme Court.

[Page 2271]

Senator Flynn: It may not be necessary, but suppose the Supreme Court is in a position to deal with all the problems that could be dealt with by way of a reference under section 55 of the Supreme Court Act?

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