In the ongoing and long-running debate over Trinity Western University's controversial law school, the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society won't be appealing a ruling that will permit the accreditation of graduates of the proposed Langley-based Christian school.
The Nova Scotia Court of Appeal upheld a lower court decision against the society on July 26. The court ruled that the Nova Scotia Barristers' Society does not have the authority to reject TWU graduates on the basis of the school's admissions policy.
The society announced today (August 15) that it will not take the appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada.
The Langley-based Christian university has raised national debate as law societies and activists have raised concerns about the covenant that students must sign. One condition of the covenant is that students must abstain from sexual activity unless it is between a husband and wife, which critics argue discriminates against LGBT individuals.
“The Community Covenant is a core part of defining the TWU community as distinctly Christian,” TWU spokeperson Amy Robertson stated in a July 26 news release. “We are not making a statement about LGBTQ people; we are making a statement about traditional Christian marriage, which is sacred to us. The same covenant calls for all members of the TWU community to respect the dignity of others regardless of their background. Loving one another without exception is one of the most important principles of the Christian faith.”
Law societies in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, New Brunswick, and PEI have all granted accreditation to the law school.
On June 30, the Ontario Court of Appeal supported the Law Society of Upper Canada's decision not to accredit the school. TWU announced that it would take the case to the Supreme Court of Canada.
After a series of reversals in B.C., the B.C. law society took the case to the B.C. Court of Appeal on June 1 to fight the B.C. Supreme Court's decision to reinstate the original accreditation of the law school.