Re: Law school's accreditation is backwards step for gay rights - A letter to the editor of The Toronto Star

01 October 2013
RE: Law school's accreditation is backwards step for gay rights

To the editor of The Toronto Star,

Fact check – Trinity Western University has been recognized as one of Canada’s most respected post-secondary education institutions by the Globe and Mail, Maclean’s and the many school boards, hospitals and businesses that give its professional schools a near 100% hiring rate for graduates.

Fact check – LGBT students who have or are currently attending TWU have publicly stated that the Community Covenant establishes a supportive environment among staff and students.

Fact check – The 60 places in the proposed law school will be 60 new opportunities for those interested in studying law to do so, not place a new limit on who may attend one of the nearly 2 dozen law schools in Canada.  TWU is a private institution that will not receive public funds to keep the law school afloat if it flounders.

Fact check – The 2001 decision concerning TWU’s school of education reinforced the right of religious communities and institutions to operate based on their religious beliefs. Graduates, of course, behave in the professional manner appropriate to their employment.

Fact check – The separation of Church and state is not part of Canada’s legal tradition. The concept is an interpretation of the United States Supreme Court in regard to the U.S. constitutional clause that forbids the state to establish an official religion or to prohibit the free exercise of religion.

I expect better from the authors of this article, all of whom have an awareness of Canadian constitutional provisions and that the decisions of Canada’s Supreme Court in regard to “freedom of religion” – both belief and practice – and how that right balances against “sexual orientation” do not support either the misstated facts or conclusions published in this article.


Don Hutchinson
Vice-President, General Legal Counsel
The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada