Christian-based Trinity Western University reported to drop controversial mandatory community covenant

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      Christian-based Trinity Western University is reportedly planning to relinquish its controversial covenant that has proved to be a barrier to opening a proposed law school.

      According to news reports, the school is dropping its mandatory requirement for students to sign and abide by a community covenant which included abstaining from sex outside of opposite-sex marriage.

      The Vancouver Sun reported that the decision was made at a meeting by the board of governors on August 9 and that the change will take effect in the 2018-2019 academic year.

      The covenant had become the focus of controversy when the postsecondary institution, based in Langley, B.C., sought accreditation for its law school in provinces across the country. National debate arose about religious freedom and discrimination against LGBT students.

      After a long-running legal battle and controversy since the university launched its law-school plans in 2012, TWU lost a Supreme Court of Canada case against the Law Society of B.C. in June.

      The removal of the covenant from being mandatory could allow the university to move ahead with its plans to open its law school. Although the law school received accreditation in some provinces, law school societies in Ontario and B.C. declined accreditation.

      The Georgia Straight has contacted TWU for further information.

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