Fred Headon, the President of the Canadian Bar Association, publicly reinforced the importance of the Canadian judicial system in an interview last week with CBC Radio. Mr. Headon’s comments come after increasing criticism of the judicial system by Members of Parliament concerned about the judiciary’s independence from Parliament.
Mr. Headon reaffirmed the role of the courts, stating, “the courts are essential and integral to a democracy. They play a very important role in the citizens’ ability to see that justice is done, to protect their rights and to see that laws are adopted and applied properly.”
Mr. Headon’s interview with CBC was a reply to Conservative MP Dan Albas’ recent comments claiming that organizations are using litigation to change legislation. Mr. Albas was recently quoted by CBC saying, “Often the Plan B is to do an end-run around our democratic process and turn to the courts where it seems some judges are quite happy to engage. This can result in decisions contrary to what have been decided in our democratic process.” Mr. Albas also criticized the unelected nature of Canadian judges, claiming that judges’ decisions were not accountable or representative of the public.