Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), [2011] SCJ No 20 (QL)

JudgeMcLachlin, C.J.C., Binnie, LeBel, Deschamps, Fish, Abella, Charron, Rothstein and Cromwell, JJ.
CourtSupreme Court (Canada)
Case DateDecember 17, 2009
JurisdictionCanada (Federal)
Citations[2011] SCJ No 20 (QL);275 OAC 205;[2011] EXP 1378;JE 2011-751;(2011), 415 N.R. 200 (SCC);331 DLR (4th) 64;[2011] EXPT 828;2011 SCC 20;[2011] 2 SCR 3;233 CRR (2d) 237;DTE 2011T-294;415 NR 200

Fraser v. Ont. (A.G.) (2011), 415 N.R. 200 (SCC)

MLB headnote and full text

[French language version follows English language version]

[La version française vient à la suite de la version anglaise]

.........................

Temp. Cite: [2011] N.R. TBEd. AP.052

Attorney General of Ontario (appellant) v. Michael J. Fraser on his own behalf and on behalf of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Canada, Xin Yuan Liu, Julia McGorman and Billie-Jo Church (respondents) and Attorney General of Canada, Attorney General of Quebec, Attorney General of New Brunswick, Attorney General of British Columbia, Attorney General of Alberta, Ontario Federation of Agriculture, Federally Regulated Employers - Transportation and Communications, Conseil du patronat du Québec Inc., Mounted Police Members' Legal Fund, Canadian Employers Council, Coalition of BC Businesses, British Columbia Agriculture Council, Justicia for Migrant Workers, Industrial Accident Victims Group of Ontario, Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Police Association and Canadian Civil Liberties Association (intervenors)

(32968; 2011 SCC 20; 2011 CSC 20)

Indexed As: Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General)

Supreme Court of Canada

McLachlin, C.J.C., Binnie, LeBel, Deschamps, Fish, Abella, Charron, Rothstein and Cromwell, JJ.

April 29, 2011.

Summary:

The Ontario Agricultural Employees Protection Act (AEPA) excluded agricultural workers from the Labour Relations Act, but provided certain protections for organizing. The United Food and Commercial Workers Union Canada and several individuals (the applicants) challenged the constitutionality of the AEPA, arguing that it violated s. 2(d) of the Charter (i.e., the right to freedom of association), by failing to provide agricultural workers in Ontario with sufficient statutory protections to enable them to exercise (a) their freedom to organize and (b) their right to bargain collectively. The applicants also alleged that the AEPA was discriminatory to agricultural workers contrary to s. 15 of the Charter.

The Ontario Superior Court, in a decision reported [2006] O.T.C. 5, dismissed the Charter challenge. The applicants appealed.

The Ontario Court of Appeal, in a decision reported 242 O.A.C. 252, allowed the appeal, holding that the AEPA did not violate s. 15 of the Charter, but breached s. 2(d) and was not saved under s. 1. As a remedy, the court declared that the AEPA was unconstitutional in that it substantially impaired the right of agricultural workers to bargain collectively because it provided no statutory protections for collective bargaining. The AEPA was declared invalid and the government was ordered to provide agricultural workers with sufficient protections to enable them to exercise their right to bargain collectively, in accordance with the court's reasons for judgment. The court, however, suspended the declaration of invalidity for 12 months to permit the government time to determine the method of statutorily protecting the rights of agricultural workers to engage in meaningful collective bargaining. The Attorney General of Ontario appealed.

The Supreme Court of Canada, Abella, J., dissenting, allowed the appeal and dismissed the action. The court held that it had not been established that the AEPA violated s. 2(d) or s. 15 of the Charter.

Civil Rights - Topic 2103

Freedom of association - General - Scope of right - The Supreme Court of Canada discussed the argument that s. 2(d) of the Charter was a freedom not a right - The court rejected the notion that the Charter could be subdivided into two kinds of guarantees, freedoms and rights (i.e., that the structure of the Charter reflected a rigid distinction between rights and freedoms) - The court stated that just as the freedom of expression implied correlative rights, so could the freedom of association (s. 2(d)) - The freedom to do a thing, when guaranteed by the Constitution interpreted positively, implied a right to do it - See paragraphs 67 to 73.

Civil Rights - Topic 2103

Freedom of association - General - Scope of right - [See both Civil Rights - Topic 2144] .

Civil Rights - Topic 2144

Freedom of association - Limitations on - Collective bargaining and right to strike - The Supreme Court of Canada reviewed the jurisprudence and principles that guided the interpretation of s. 2(d) (the right to freedom of association) in the labour/collective bargaining context - In particular, the court discussed the impact and interpretation of Health Services v. B.C. (2007 SCC) which conferred constitutional status on collective bargaining - The court rejected an argument that the Health Sciences decision should be overturned - The court stated that the majority decision in Health Services should be interpreted as holding what it repeatedly stated: that workers had a constitutional right to make collective representations and to have their collective representations considered in good faith - See paragraphs 18 to 97.

Civil Rights - Topic 2144

Freedom of association - Limitations on - Collective bargaining and right to strike - The Ontario Agricultural Employees Protection Act (AEPA) excluded agricultural workers from the Labour Relations Act (LRA), but provided certain protections for organizing - A union and several individuals challenged the constitutionality of the AEPA, arguing that it violated s. 2(d) of the Charter (i.e., the right to freedom of association) - At issue was whether the failure of the Ontario government to enact a positive statutory framework for agricultural workers modelled after the LRA violated s. 2(d) (i.e., did s. 2(d) properly understood and applied require the Ontario legislature to provide a particular form of collective bargaining rights to agricultural workers, in order to secure the effective exercise of their associational rights) - The Supreme Court of Canada held that no particular bargaining model was required - The AEPA, correctly interpreted, protected not only the right of employees to make submissions to employers on workplace matters, but also the right to have those submissions considered in good faith by the employer - It followed that the AEPA did not violate s. 2(d) of the Charter - It was therefore, unnecessary to consider s. 1 - See paragraphs 17 to 113.

Civil Rights - Topic 2144.1

Freedom of association - Limitations on - Collective bargaining and employer or employee groups - [See both Civil Rights - Topic 2144 and Courts - Topic 79 ].

Civil Rights - Topic 2155

Freedom of association - Limitations on - Labour legislation - [See both Civil Rights - Topic 2144 and Courts - Topic 79 ].

Civil Rights - Topic 2181

Freedom of association - Right of - General - [See both Civil Rights - Topic 2144 ].

Civil Rights - Topic 2204

Freedom of association - Denial of right of - What constitutes - [See both Civil Rights - Topic 2144 ].

Civil Rights - Topic 5668

Equality and protection of the law - Particular cases - Labour legislation - The Ontario Agricultural Employees Protection Act (AEPA) excluded agricultural workers from the Labour Relations Act, but provided certain protections for organizing - A union and several farm workers challenged the constitutionality of the AEPA, arguing that it violated s. 15 of the Charter because it excluded them from the statutory protections accorded to workers in other sectors - The Supreme Court of Canada held that this claim could not succeed on the record before the court - While the AEPA regime did not provide all the protections that the LRA extended to many workers, a formal legislative distinction did not establish discrimination under s. 15 - Rather, s. 15 contemplated a substantive discrimination that impacted on individuals stereotypically or in ways that reinforced existing prejudice and disadvantage - The AEPA provided a special labour regime for agricultural workers - However, on the record before the court, it had not been established that the regime utilized unfair stereotypes or perpetuated existing prejudice and disadvantage - Until the regime established by the AEPA was tested, it could not be known whether it inappropriately disadvantaged farm workers - The claim was premature - See paragraphs 114 to 117 and 295.

Civil Rights - Topic 8472

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Interpretation - Precedent - General - [See Courts - Topic 79 ].

Civil Rights - Topic 8668

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Equality rights (s. 15) - What constitutes a breach of s. 15 - [See Civil Rights - Topic 5668 ].

Courts - Topic 79

Stare decisis - Authority of judicial decisions - Prior decisions of same court - Supreme Court of Canada - Health Services v. B.C. (2007 SCC) conferred constitutional status on collective bargaining (i.e., that s. 2(d) of the Charter, freedom of association, protected collective bargaining) - The Supreme Court of Canada (2011) rejected an argument that Health Services should be overturned - The court stated that rejection of Health Services implied rejection of Dunmore (2001 SCC) as well, since the two cases rested on the same fundamental logic - The court stated that the seriousness of overturning two recent precedents of the court, representing the considered views of firm majorities, could not be overstated, particularly given their recent vintage - The court also rejected the suggestion that since Health Services dealt with constitutional law, the court should be more willing to overturn it - The court stated that the constitutional nature of a decision was not a primary consideration when deciding whether or not to overrule, but at best a final consideration in difficult cases - The court should be particularly careful before reversing a precedent where the effect was to diminish Charter protection - Further, absent notice to the profession and interested persons (which was not done in this case), overruling Health Services was procedurally inappropriate - See paragraphs 56 to 58, 129 to 275 and 321.

Labour Law - Topic 5

General principles and definitions - General - Right to bargain collectively - [See both Civil Rights - Topic 2144 and Courts - Topic 79 ].

Cases Noticed:

Dunmore et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General) et al., [2001] 3 S.C.R. 1016; 279 N.R. 201; 154 O.A.C. 201; 2001 SCC 94, appld. [paras. 1, 152, 297, 323].

Health Services and Support - Facilities Subsector Bargaining Association et al. v. British Columbia, [2007] 2 S.C.R. 391; 363 N.R. 226; 242 B.C.A.C. 1; 400 W.A.C. 1; 2007 SCC 27, appld. [paras. 7, 121, 297, 321].

Reference Re Compulsory Arbitration, [1987] 1 S.C.R. 313; 74 N.R. 99; 78 A.R. 1, refd to. [paras. 19, 157, 321].

Reference Re Public Service Employee Relations Act (Alta.) - see Reference Re Compulsory Arbitration.

Public Service Alliance of Canada v. Canada, [1987] 1 S.C.R. 424; 75 N.R. 161, refd to. [paras. 19, 157, 321].

Retail, Wholesale, Department Store Union, Locals 544, 496, 635 and 955 et al. v. Saskatchewan et al., [1987] 1 S.C.R. 460; 74 N.R. 321; 56 Sask.R. 277, refd to. [paras. 19, 157, 321].

Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada v. Northwest Territories (Commissioner) et al., [1990] 2 S.C.R. 367; 112 N.R. 269, refd to. [paras. 22, 160, 323].

Delisle v. Canada (Attorney General) et al., [1999] 2 S.C.R. 989; 244 N.R. 33, refd to. [paras. 23, 161, 307].

Irwin Toy Ltd. v. Québec (Procureur général), [1989] 1 S.C.R. 927; 94 N.R. 167; 24 Q.A.C. 2, refd to. [para. 33].

Criminal Lawyers' Association (Ont.) v. Ontario (Minister of Public Safety and Security), [2010] 1 S.C.R. 815; 402 N.R. 350; 262 O.A.C. 258; 2010 SCC 23, refd to. [paras. 46, 193].

R. v. Henry (D.B.) et al., [2005] 3 S.C.R. 609; 342 N.R. 259; 376 A.R. 1; 360 W.A.C. 1; 219 B.C.A.C. 1; 361 W.A.C. 1; 2005 SCC 76, refd to. [paras. 58, 130].

Haig et al. v. Canada; Haig et al. v. Kingsley, [1993] 2 S.C.R. 995; 156 N.R. 81, refd to. [para. 69].

Charkaoui, Re, [2007] 1 S.C.R. 350; 358 N.R. 1; 2007 SCC 9, refd to. [para. 72].

Vriend et al. v. Alberta, [1998] 1 S.C.R. 493; 224 N.R. 1; 212 A.R. 237; 168 W.A.C. 237, refd to. [para. 73, 316].

United Food and Commercial Workers, Local 1518 v. KMart Canada Ltd. et al., [1999] 2 S.C.R. 1083; 245 N.R. 1; 128 B.C.A.C. 1; 208 W.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 78].

Workers' Compensation Board (N.S.) v. Martin et al., [2003] 2 S.C.R. 504; 310 N.R. 22; 217 N.S.R.(2d) 301; 683 A.P.R. 301; 2003 SCC 54, refd to. [para. 79].

R. v. Advance Cutting and Coring Ltd. et al., [2001] 3 S.C.R. 209; 276 N.R. 1; 2001 SCC 70, refd to. [paras. 80, 212, 302].

R. v. Mannion, [1986] 2 S.C.R. 272; 69 N.R. 189; 75 A.R. 16, refd to. [para. 83].

Davidson v. Slaight Communications Inc., [1989] 1 S.C.R. 1038; 93 N.R. 183, refd to. [para. 104].

R. v. Sharpe (J.R.), [2001] 1 S.C.R. 45; 264 N.R. 201; 146 B.C.A.C. 161; 239 W.A.C. 161; 2001 SCC 2, refd to. [para. 104].

Adams Mine, Cliffs of Canada Ltd. v. United Steelworkers of America (1982), 1 C.L.R.B.R.(N.S.) 384, refd to. [para. 112].

Andrews v. Law Society of British Columbia, [1989] 1 S.C.R. 143; 91 N.R. 255, refd to. [para. 116].

R. v. Kapp (J.M.) et al., [2008] 2 S.C.R. 483; 376 N.R. 1; 256 B.C.A.C. 75; 431 W.A.C. 75; 2008 SCC 41, refd to. [para. 116].

R. v. Bernard, [1988] 2 S.C.R. 833; 90 N.R. 321; 32 O.A.C. 161, refd to. [para. 129].

R. v. Chaulk and Morrissette, [1990] 3 S.C.R. 1303; 119 N.R. 161; 69 Man.R.(2d) 161, refd to. [para. 129].

R. v. K.G.B., [1993] 1 S.C.R. 740; 148 N.R. 241; 61 O.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 129].

R. v. Robinson (D.) [1996] 1 S.C.R. 683; 194 N.R. 181; 72 B.C.A.C. 161; 119 W.A.C. 161, refd to. [para. 129].

R. v. Salituro, [1991] 3 S.C.R. 654; 131 N.R. 161; 50 O.A.C. 125, refd to. [para. 130].

Hamstra et al. v. British Columbia Rugby Union et al., [1997] 1 S.C.R. 1092; 211 N.R. 89; 89 B.C.A.C. 161; 145 W.A.C. 161, refd to. [para. 130].

Queensland v. Commonwealth (1977), 139 C.L.R. 585 (Aust. H.C.), refd to. [para. 132].

Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey (1992), 505 U.S. 833 (Sup. Ct.), refd to. [para. 136].

Adarand Constructors Inc. v. Pena (1995), 515 U.S. 200, refd to. [para. 138].

Canadian Egg Marketing Agency v. Pineview Poultry Products Ltd. et al., [1998] 3 S.C.R. 157; 231 N.R. 201; 223 A.R. 201; 183 W.A.C. 201, refd to. [para. 161].

Doucet-Boudreau et al. v. Nova Scotia (Minister of Education) et al., [2003] 3 S.C.R. 3; 312 N.R. 1; 218 N.S.R.(2d) 311; 687 A.P.R. 311; 2003 SCC 62, refd to. [para. 180].

R. v. Powley (S.) et al., [2003] 2 S.C.R. 207; 308 N.R. 201; 177 O.A.C. 201; 2003 SCC 43, refd to. [para. 180].

Canadian Broadcasting Corp. v. New Brunswick (Attorney General), [1996] 3 S.C.R. 480; 203 N.R. 169; 182 N.B.R.(2d) 81; 463 A.P.R. 81, refd to. [para. 194].

R. v. National Post et al., [2010] 1 S.C.R. 477; 401 N.R. 104; 262 O.A.C. 1; 2010 SCC 16, refd to. [para. 195].

R. v. Big M Drug Mart Ltd., [1985] 1 S.C.R. 295; 58 N.R. 81; 60 A.R. 161, refd to. [para. 206].

Syndicat Northcrest v. Amselem et al., [2004] 2 S.C.R. 551; 323 N.R. 59; 2004 SCC 47, refd to. [para. 209].

Reference Re Sections 193 and 195.1(1)(c) of the Criminal Code, [1990] 1 S.C.R. 1123; 109 N.R. 81; 68 Man.R.(2d) 1, refd to. [para. 218].

Lavigne v. Ontario Public Service Employees' Union et al., [1991] 2 S.C.R. 211; 126 N.R. 161; 48 O.A.C. 241, refd to. [para. 221].

Bell ExpressVu Limited Partnership v. Rex et al., [2002] 2 S.C.R. 559; 287 N.R. 248; 166 B.C.A.C. 1; 271 W.A.C. 1; 2002 SCC 42, refd to. [para. 253].

Royal Oak Mines Inc. v. Canada Labour Relations Board et al., [1996] 1 S.C.R. 369; 193 N.R. 81, refd to. [paras. 267, 327].

Rizzo & Rizzo Shoes Ltd. (Bankrupt), Re, [1998] 1 S.C.R. 27; 221 N.R. 241; 106 O.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 281].

Canadian Federation of Students (B.C.) et al. v. Greater Vancouver Transportation Authority et al., [2009] 2 S.C.R. 295; 389 N.R. 98; 272 B.C.A.C. 29; 459 W.A.C. 29; 2009 SCC 31, refd to. [para. 317].

Union of Environment Workers v. DeVilbiss Ltd., [1976] 2 C.L.R.B.R. 101 (Ont. L.R.B.), refd to. [para. 327].

Hutterian Brethren of Wilson Colony et al. v. Alberta, [2009] 2 S.C.R. 567; 390 N.R. 202; 460 A.R. 1; 462 W.A.C. 1; 2009 SCC 37, refd to. [para. 355].

United Food and Commercial Workers International Union v. Wellington Mushroom Farm, [1980] O.L.R.B. Rep. May 813, refd to. [para. 357].

Statutes Noticed:

Agricultural Employees Protection Act, S.O. 2002, c. 16, generally [para. 1 et seq.]; sect. 5(1), sect. 5(5), sect. 5(6), sect. 5(7) [para. 100, Appendix].

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, 1982, sect. 2(d), sect. 15 [para. 17].

Labour Relations Act, S.O. 1995, c. 1, sect. 3(b.1) [para. 118].

Authors and Works Noticed:

Adams, George W., Canadian Labour Law (2nd Ed.) (Looseleaf), pp. 1-11 [para. 169]; 10-111, 10-112, 10-122, 10-124 to 10-128 [paras. 267, 283]; 10-1710, 10-1870 to 10-1920 [para. 327]; paras. 1.240 to 1.250 [para. 344]; 3.1750 [para. 346].

Adams, Roy J., Prospects for Labour's Right to Bargain Collectively After B.C. Health Services (2009), 59 U.N.B.L.J. 85, generally [para. 351].

Bandes, Susan, The Negative Constitution: A Critique (1989-1990), 88 Mich. L. Rev. 2271, p. 2285 [para. 317].

Barak-Ussoskin, Elisheva (Elika), Collaboration in the Tripartite System: The Right to be Consulted and the Duty to Consult, in Höland, Armin, Hohman-Dennhardt, Christine, Schmidt, Marlene, and Seifert, Achim, Employee Involvement in a Globalising World: Liber Amicorum Manfred Weiss (2005), p. 445 [para. 327].

Basu, Robin K., Revolution and Aftermath: B.C. Health Services and Its Implications (2008), 42 S.C.L.R.(2d) 165, pp. 177 [para. 35]; 186, 187 [para. 212].

Beatty, David, and Kennett, Steven, Striking Back: Fighting Words, Social Protest and Political Participation in Free and Democratic Societies (1988), 67 Can. Bar Rev. 573, generally [para. 87].

Beatty, David M., Putting the Charter to Work: Designing a Constitutional Labour Code (1987), p. 89 [para. 348].

Brunelle, Christian, La liberté d'association se porte mieux: un commentaire de l'arrêt Health Services, in Conférence des juristes de l'Etat 2009: XVIII Conférence (2009), p. 237 [para. 88].

Cameron, Jamie, Due Process, Collective Bargaining, and s. 2(d) of the Charter: A Comment on B.C. Health Services (2006-2007), 13 C.L.E.L.J. 233, generally [para. 88]; pp. 240, 259, 262 [para. 147].

Cameron, Jamie, The Labour Trilogy's Last Rites: B.C. Health and a Constitutional Right to Strike (2009-2010), 15 C.L.E.L.J. 297, generally [para. 88].

Canada, Task Force on Labour Relations, Canadian Industrial Relations: The Report of Task Force on Labour Relations (1968) (Woods Report), p. 86 [para. 348].

Carter, Donald D., England, Geoffrey, Etherington, Brian, Trudeau, Gilles, Labour Law in Canada (5th Ed. 2002), paras. 574 [para. 345]; 621, 622 [para. 327].

Coutu, Michel, Fontaine, Laurence Léa, and Marceau, Georges, Droits des rapports collectifs du travail au Québec (2009), p. 144 [para. 35].

Dau-Schmidt, Kenneth G., Labour Law and Industrial Peace: A Comparative Analysis of the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Japan Under the Bargaining Model (2000), 8 Tul. J. Int'l & Comp. L. 117, generally [para. 228].

Driedger, Elmer A., Construction of Statutes (2nd Ed. 1983), p. 87 [para. 281].

Elliot, Robin, Developments in Constitutional Law: The 1989-1990 Term (1991), 2 S.C.L.R.(2d) 83, generally [para. 87].

Etherington, Brian, The B.C. Health Services and Support Decision - The Constitutionalization of a Right to Bargain Collectively in Canada: Where Did It Come From and Where Will It Lead? (2009), 30 Comp. Lab. L. & Pol'y J. 715, pp. 726 [para. 235]; 727 [paras. 235, 244]; 734 to 739 [para. 146].

Fudge, Judy, and Tucker, Eric, Labour Before the Law: The Regulation of Workers' Collective Action in Canada 1900-1948 (2001), generally [para. 235].

Fudge, Judy, Labour is Not a Commodity: The Supreme Court of Canada and the Freedom of Association (2004), 67 Sask. L. Rev. 425, generally [para. 235].

Fudge, Judy, The Supreme Court of Canada and the Right to Bargain Collectively: The Implications of the Health Services and Support case in Canada and Beyond (2008), 37 Indus. L.J. 25, p. 30 [para. 314].

Gall, Peter A., Freedom of Association and Trade Unions: A Double-Edged Constitutional Sword, in Weiler, Joseph M., and Elliot, Robin M., Litigating the Values of a Nation: The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (1986), p. 248 [para. 229].

Gernigon, Bernard, Odero, Alberto, and Guido, Horacio, ILO principles concerning collective bargaining (2000), 139 Int'l Lab. Rev. 33, generally [para. 248]; pp. 51, 52 [para. 95].

Hansard (Ont.) - see Ontario, Hansard, Legislative Assembly, Official Report of Debates.

Harris, Bruce V., Final Appellate Courts Overruling Their Own "Wrong" Precedents: The Ongoing Search for Principle (2002), 118 L.Q.R. 408, generally [para. 137].

Hogg, Peter W., Bushell Thornton, Allison A., and Wright, Wade K., Charter Dialogue Revisited - Or "Much Ado About Metaphors" (2007), 45 Osgoode Hall L.J. 1, p. 12 [para. 282].

Hogg, Peter W., Constitutional Law of Canada (5th Ed.) (Looseleaf Supp.), vol. 2, pp. 15-50 [para. 253]; 37-1, 37-2 [para. 180]; 44-8 [para. 227]; 44-9 [para. 218].

Höland, Armin, Hohman-Dennhardt, Christine, Schmidt, Marlene, and Seifert, Achim, Employee Involvement in a Globalising World: Liber Amicorum Manfred Weiss (2005), p. 445 [para. 327].

Holmes, Stephen, and Sunstein, Cass R., The Cost of Rights: Why Liberty Depends on Taxes (1999), pp. 43, 44 [para. 316].

Hutchinson, Allan C., and Petter, Andrew, Private Rights/Public Wrongs: The Liberal Lie of the Charter (1988), 38 U.T.L.J. 278, generally [para. 87].

International Labour Office, Report of the Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations, Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining (1994), para. 243 [para. 95].

Langille, Brian, Can We Rely on the ILO? (2006-2007), 13 C.L.E.L.J. 273, generally [para. 248]; pp. 291, 292 [para. 249].

Langille, Brian, The Freedom of Association Mess: How We Got into It and How We Can Get out of It (2009), 54 McGill L.J. 177, generally [para. 318]; pp. 185 [paras. 184, 211]; 191 [paras. 235, 243]; 192 [para. 235]; 202 [para. 211].

Langille, Brian, Why Are Canadian Judges Drafting Labour Codes - And Constitutionalizing the Wagner Act Model? (2009-2010), 15 C.L.E.L.J. 101, p. 107 [para. 228].

Laskin, Bora, Recent Labour Legislation in Canada (1944), 22 Can. Bar Rev. 776, p. 781 [para. 347].

Macklem, Patrick, Developments in Employment Law: The 1990-1991 Term (1992), 3 S.C.L.R.(2d) 227, pp. 239 [para. 79]; 240 [paras. 79, 87]; 241 [para. 79].

Ontario, Hansard, Legislative Assembly, Official Report of Debates, No. 43A (October 16, 2002), p. 2128 [para. 332].

Ontario, Hansard, Legislative Assembly, Official Report of Debates, No. 46, 3rd Sess., 37th Parl. (October 22, 2002), generally [para. 105].

Ontario, Hansard, Legislative Assembly, Official Report of Debates, No. 46A (October 22, 2002), p. 2339 [para. 332].

Ontario, Report of the Task Force on Agricultural Labour Relations: Report to the Minister of Labour (1992), generally [para. 359]; pp. 3 [paras. 361, 365]; 7, 8 [para. 360]; 10 [para. 361].

Ontario, Report of the Task Force on Agricultural Labour Relations: Second Report to the Minister of Labour (1992), generally [para. 359]; p. 17 [para. 361].

Parkes, Debra, Precedent Unbound? Contemporary Approaches to Precedent in Canada (2006), 32 Man. L.J. 135, p. 149 [para. 137].

Rayner, Wesley B., Canadian Collective Bargaining Law (2nd Ed. 2007), pp. 16 [para. 345]; 333, 334 [para. 327]; 349 to 355 [para. 268].

Sharpe, Robert J., and Roach, Kent, The Charter of Rights and Freedoms (4th Ed. 2009), p. 59 [para. 252].

Sullivan, Ruth, Sullivan and Driedger on the Construction of Statutes (4th Ed. 2002), p. 34 [para. 282].

Summers, Clyde W., Exclusive Representation: A Comparative Inquiry into a "Unique" American Principle (1998-1999), 20 Comp. Lab. L. & Pol'y J. 47, generally [para. 351].

Tucker, Eric, The Constitutional Right to Bargain Collectively: The Ironies of Labour History in the Supreme Court of Canada (2008), 61 Labour/Le Travail 151, generally [para. 235]; pp. 166 [paras. 236, 237, 242]; 168 [para. 236].

Verge, Pierre, L'affirmation constitutionnelle de la liberté d'association: une nouvelle vie pour l'autonomie collective? (2010), 51 C. de D. 353, generally [para. 88].

Verge, Pierre, La Cour suprême, le "droit" à la négociation collective et le "droit" de grève (2006), 66 R. du B. 391, generally [para. 88].

Verge, Pierre, Inclusion du droit de grève dans la liberté générale et constitutionnelle d'association: justification et effets (2009), 50 C. de D. 267, generally [para. 88].

Weiler, Joseph M., and Elliot, Robin M., Litigating the Values of a Nation: The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (1986), p. 248 [para. 229].

Weiler, Paul, Reconcilable Differences: New Directions in Canadian Labour Law (1980), p. 126 [para. 346].

Woods Report - see Canada, Task Force on Labour Relations, Canadian Industrial Relations: The Report of Task Force on Labour Relations.

Counsel:

Robin K. Basu and Shannon M. Chace, for the appellant;

Paul J.J. Cavalluzzo and Fay C. Faraday, for the respondents;

Anne M. Turley, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of Canada;

Michel Déom and Geneviève Lessard, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of Quebec;

Gaétan Migneault and Michelle Brun-Coughlan, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of New Brunswick;

Neena Sharma, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of British Columbia;

Roderick S. Wiltshire, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of Alberta;

John D.R. Craig and Jodi Gallagher, for the intervenor, the Ontario Federation of Agriculture;

Roy L. Heenan and Thomas Brady, for the intervenor, the Federally Regulated Employers - Transportation and Communications;

Robert Dupont, Pascale Gauthier and Jean H. Lafleur, for the intervenor, Conseil du patronat du Québec Inc.;

Brad Elberg and Kelly Henriques, for the intervenor, the Mounted Police Members' Legal Fund;

Augustus G. Lilly, Q.C., and Stephen F. Penney, for the intervenor, the Canadian Employers Council;

Peter A. Gall, Q.C., Donald R. Munroe, Q.C., and Andrea L. Zwack, for the intervenors, the Coalition of BC Businesses and the British Columbia Agriculture Council;

Selwyn A. Pieters and Adrian A. Smith, for the intervenors, Justicia for Migrant Workers and the Industrial Accident Victims Group of Ontario;

Steven Barrett and Ethan Poskanzer, for the intervenor, the Canadian Labour Congress;

Ian J. Roland and Michael Fenrick, for the intervenor, the Canadian Police Association;

Joshua S. Phillips and Antony Singleton, for the intervenor, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

Solicitors of Record:

Attorney General of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario, for the appellant;

Cavalluzzo Hayes Shilton McIntyre & Cornish, Toronto, Ontario, for the respondents;

Attorney General of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of Canada;

Attorney General of Quebec, Québec, Quebec, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of Quebec;

Attorney General of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of New Brunswick;

Attorney General of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C., for the intervenor, the Attorney General of British Columbia;

Attorney General of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, for the intervenor, the Attorney General of Alberta;

Heenan Blaikie, Toronto, Ontario, for the intervenor, the Ontario Federation of Agriculture;

Heenan Blaikie, Montréal, Quebec, for the intervenor, the Federally Regulated Employers - Transportation and Communications;

Heenan Blaikie, Montréal, Quebec, for the intervenor, Conseil du patronat du Québec Inc.;

Heenan Blaikie, Toronto, Ontario, for the intervenor, the Mounted Police Members' Legal Fund;

Stewart McKelvey, St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, for the intervenor, the Canadian Employers Council;

Heenan Blaikie, Vancouver, B.C., for the intervenors, the Coalition of BC Businesses and the British Columbia Agriculture Council;

Pieters Law Office, Toronto, Ontario, for the intervenors, Justicia for Migrant Workers and the Industrial Accident Victims Group of Ontario;

Sack Goldblatt Mitchell, Toronto, Ontario, for the intervenor, the Canadian Labour Congress;

Paliare, Roland, Rosenberg, Rothstein, Toronto, Ontario, for the intervenor, the Canadian Police Association;

Green & Chercover, Toronto, Ontario, for the intervenor, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

This appeal was heard on December 17, 2009, by McLachlin, C.J.C., Binnie, LeBel, Deschamps, Fish, Abella, Charron, Rothstein and Cromwell, JJ., of the Supreme Court of Canada. The decision of the court was delivered on April 29, 2011, in both official languages, with the following opinions filed:

McLachlin, C.J.C., and LeBel, J. (Binnie, Fish and Cromwell, JJ., concurring) - see paragraphs 1 to 118;

Rothstein, J. (Charron, J., concurring), concurring in the result - see paragraphs 119 to 296;

Deschamps, J., concurring in the result - see paragraphs 297 to 320;

Abella, J., dissenting - see paragraphs 321 to 369.

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179 practice notes
  • Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), DTE 2011T-294
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • December 17, 2009
    ...style="text-align:justify;margin:0.0000in 1.4017in 0.0000in 0.0000in;text-indent:0.0000in;">Fraser v. Ont. (A.G.) (2011), 275 O.A.C. 205 MLB headnote and full text [French language version follows English language version] [La version française vient à la suite de la version a......
  • Michel v. Graydon, 2020 SCC 24
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court (Canada)
    • September 18, 2020
    ...v. Sparrow Electric Corp., [1997] 1 S.C.R. 411; R. v. Henry, 2005 SCC 76, [2005] 3 S.C.R. 609; Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fraser, 2011 SCC 20, [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3; Anderson v. Laboucan, 2017 ABQB 642; Baldwin v. Funston (2007), 85 O.R. (3d) 721; Foster v. Foster, 2013 BCCA 205; Tepleski v.......
  • Mounted Police Association of Ontario et al. v. Canada (Attorney General), (2015) 328 O.A.C. 1 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • February 18, 2014
    ...400 W.A.C. 1 ; 2007 SCC 27 , refd to. [paras. 1, 164]. 1.0000i n;text-indent:-0.5000in;">Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3; 415 N.R. 200 ; 275 O.A.C. 205 ; 2011 SCC 20 , refd to. [paras. 1, 1.0000i n;text-indent:-0.5000in;">Delisle v. Canada (Attorney Gene......
  • Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), 415 NR 200
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • December 17, 2009
    ...Group of Ontario, Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Police Association and Canadian Civil Liberties Association (interveners) (32968; 2011 SCC 20; 2011 CSC Indexed As: Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General) Fraser v. Ont. (A.G.) (SCC) - Labour law - Collective bargaining and righ......
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108 cases
  • Michel v. Graydon, 2020 SCC 24
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court (Canada)
    • September 18, 2020
    ...v. Sparrow Electric Corp., [1997] 1 S.C.R. 411; R. v. Henry, 2005 SCC 76, [2005] 3 S.C.R. 609; Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fraser, 2011 SCC 20, [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3; Anderson v. Laboucan, 2017 ABQB 642; Baldwin v. Funston (2007), 85 O.R. (3d) 721; Foster v. Foster, 2013 BCCA 205; Tepleski v.......
  • Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), 415 NR 200
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • December 17, 2009
    ...Group of Ontario, Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Police Association and Canadian Civil Liberties Association (interveners) (32968; 2011 SCC 20; 2011 CSC Indexed As: Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General) Fraser v. Ont. (A.G.) (SCC) - Labour law - Collective bargaining and righ......
  • Mounted Police Association of Ontario et al. v. Canada (Attorney General), (2015) 328 O.A.C. 1 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • February 18, 2014
    ...400 W.A.C. 1 ; 2007 SCC 27 , refd to. [paras. 1, 164]. 1.0000i n;text-indent:-0.5000in;">Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3; 415 N.R. 200 ; 275 O.A.C. 205 ; 2011 SCC 20 , refd to. [paras. 1, 1.0000i n;text-indent:-0.5000in;">Delisle v. Canada (Attorney Gene......
  • Mounted Police Association of Ontario et al. v. Canada (Attorney General), [2015] 1 SCR 3
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • February 18, 2014
    ...400 W.A.C. 1 ; 2007 SCC 27 , refd to. [paras. 1, 164]. 1.0000i n;text-indent:-0.5000in;">Fraser et al. v. Ontario (Attorney General), [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3; 415 N.R. 200 ; 275 O.A.C. 205 ; 2011 SCC 20 , refd to. [paras. 1, 1.0000i n;text-indent:-0.5000in;">Delisle v. Canada (Attorney Gene......
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12 firm's commentaries
  • Top 5 Civil Appeals From The Court Of Appeal (September 2012)
    • Canada
    • Mondaq Canada
    • October 3, 2012
    ...General's appeal and dismissing the AJC's appeal. Writing for the court, Sharpe J.A. applied Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fraser, 2011 SCC 20, [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3 where the Supreme Court of Canada clarified its earlier decision in Health Services and Support - Facilities Subsector Bargaining......
  • Beer, Bedford, And Beyond — The Supreme Court Of Canada And The Limits Of Precedent In R. V. Comeau
    • Canada
    • Mondaq Canada
    • June 27, 2018
    ...[1958] S.C.R. 626. 16 See Canada v. Craig, 2012 SCC 43, [2012] 2 S.C.R. 489, at para. 27; see also Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fraser, 2011 SCC 20, [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3, at para. 139, per Rothstein J. (concurring); Teva Canada Ltd. v. TD Canada Trust, 2017 SCC 51, [2017] 2 S.C.R. 317, at par......
  • The Burden Of Proof To Rectify A Contract: The Ordinary Civil Standard Applies
    • Canada
    • Mondaq Canada
    • January 9, 2014
    ...emphasized that overruling one of its prior decisions is not a step to be taken lightly (see Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fraser, 2011 SCC 20 at para. 56). Can it truly be the case that F.H. v. McDougall intended to overrule at least four Supreme Court of Canada precedents, including one o......
  • Alberta Court Freezes Union Legislation
    • Canada
    • Mondaq Canada
    • February 24, 2014
    ...In his decision ( Alberta Union of Provincial Employees v Alberta, 2014 ABQB 97), Thomas J cited Ontario (Attorney General) v Fraser, 2011 SCC 20 ("Fraser"), which states freedom of association in a union context means people have the Charter-protected right to make collective rep......
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53 books & journal articles
  • The Constitutionalization of Collective Bargaining Law
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Labour and Employment Law. Cases, Materials, and Commentary. Ninth Edition
    • June 24, 2018
    ...— Facilities Subsector Bargaining Association v British Columbia, 2007 SCC 27 [Health Services] • Ontario (Attorney General) v Fraser, 2011 SCC 20 [Fraser] 2015: the third trilogy • Mounted Police Association of Ontario v Canada (Attorney General), 2015 SCC 1 [MPAO] • Meredith v Canada ......
  • Table of Cases
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books The Law Society of Upper Canada Special Lectures 2017
    • June 24, 2021
    ...v Ortega, 480 US 709 (1987) ....................................................................243 Ontario (Attorney General) v Fraser, 2011 SCC 20 ................................. 294, 314–30, 334, 338, 344, 350–53, 549, 586 Ontario Human Rights Commission v Etobicoke, 1982 CanLII 15 (SC......
  • Table of Cases
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Constitutional Law. Fifth Edition Preliminary Sections
    • August 3, 2017
    ...[1946] A.C. 193, 85 C.C.C. 225, [1946] 2 D.L.R. 1 (P.C.) 247 , 248 , 249 , 251 , 254 , 270 , 271 Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fraser, [2011] 2 S.C.R. 3, 2011 SCC 20 422 , 452 , 455 , 456 Ontario Adult Entertainment Bar Assn. v. Metropolitan Toronto (Municipality) (1995), 26 O.R. (3d) 257, ......
  • The International Constitution
    • Canada
    • Irwin Books Constitutional Labour Rights in Canada. Farm Workers and the Fraser Case
    • June 17, 2012
    ...and Support—Facilities Subsector Bargaining Assn v British Columbia , [2007] 2 SCR 391 [ BC Health Services ]. 4 Ontario (AG) v Fraser , 2011 SCC 20 [ Fraser ]. 5 South Africa’s constitution, for example, provides that “in interpreting the provisions of this Chapter [dealing with fundamenta......
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