The CBA supports changes to Judges Act that increase number of judges in Alberta and Quebec

  • May 06, 2014

Ottawa — The Canadian Bar Association (CBA) welcomes changes to the Judges Act contained in Bill C-31 that would increase the number of Superior Court judges in Alberta and Quebec.

“A functioning court system is a cornerstone of Canada’s democracy,” says CBA President Fred Headon of Montreal. “We need an adequate number of judges to ensure a functioning court system and access to justice that is unfettered by undue delay. The appointment of judges to the Superior Courts is a constitutional responsibility of the federal government.”

The CBA supports the government’s action on this front. The amendments will increase the number of Superior Court judges in Quebec from 140 to 144 and in Alberta from 55 to 57, in response to persuasive business cases made by those provincial governments for additional judges to ensure the sound administration of justice.

“Inadequate number of judges imposes heavy costs not just on the individual, but on broader society,” says Fred Headon. “The Canadian justice system has been deprived of adequate resources needed to ensure that legal disputes are resolved without excessive delay.”

The CBA has a longstanding commitment to access to justice for all Canadians. Most recently, the CBA issued a comprehensive report on Equal Justice in Canada last year. The report set out wide-ranging targets to facilitate everyday justice and reinvent the delivery of legal services. 

“Courts and impartial judges are essential to our public justice system and democracy itself,” notes Fred Headon.

Fred Headon will appear before the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee on Wednesday, May 7, at 5:15 pm, in Room 257, East Block. The CBA letter is available online. The CBA will address other parts of Bill C-31 separately.

The CBA is dedicated to supporting the rule of law, improvements in the law, and the administration of justice. Some 37,500 lawyers, law teachers, and law students from across Canada are members.