OTTAWA, Oct. 27, 2017 /CNW/ - The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, remains committed to appointing judges of the highest calibre who are representative of the diversity of Canadian society. That commitment is demonstrated by the Minister's new Judicial Advisory Committee process for assessing applicants to the federal judiciary.
Today, Minister Wilson-Raybould is proud to announce appointments to the Judicial Advisory Committee (JAC) for the Tax Court of Canada. The JAC is composed of five members from across Canada with expertise in taxation.
The committee announced today adds to the existing complement of JACs. Fifteen JACs were previously reconstituted under our Government's new, merit-based assessment process. These JACs have started to provide the Minister of Justice with lists of highly recommended and recommended candidates. Key changes to the assessment process included:
- committees that fully reflect the diversity of Canadian society;
- revised committee mandates to increase the independence of their work;
- an open selection process for the public representatives on each committee – a measure which aims to ensure that all Canadians are properly represented in the appointment process; and
- online training on diversity and unconscious bias for all JAC members.
JACs are independent bodies mandated to provide non-binding, merit-based recommendations to the Minister of Justice on federal judicial appointments. All individuals seeking appointment to the bench must apply under the new judicial appointment process introduced in October 2016.
"I am grateful to these five Canadians for volunteering their time and energies to the Judicial Advisory Committee for the Tax Court of Canada. The newly announced committee includes tax practitioners, renowned academics, and a justice of the Tax Court of Canada.
Members of the Committee are tasked with ensuring that only the most meritorious candidates are recommended for appointment to the Tax Court of Canada. As such, their work will have a tremendous impact for the Court, for litigants, and ultimately for the Canadian taxpayer."
The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, P.C., Q.C., M.P.
Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
- There are 17 Judicial Advisory Committees (JACs) across Canada, with each province and territory represented.
- The Judicial Advisory Committee for the Tax Court of Canada is unique. Unlike the other 16 JACs across Canada, it is composed of five members with expertise in taxation. (The other 16 JACs have seven members each, with members representing the judiciary, the bar, and the general public.)
- Committee members are appointed by the federal government by Order in Council for a two-year term.
- For the first time, JAC members representing the general public were selected through an open application process. The selection criteria included commitment to public service, knowledge of the judicial system and/or public decision-making processes, subject matter expertise, geographic representation, language abilities, gender and diversity.
- The JACs have been given a revised mandate, which will serve to strengthen their independence. All members receive online training on unconscious bias and online training on the importance of diversity in the judiciary by the Chief Justice of Canada, the Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, P.C.
- The Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs, established in 1978, provides administrative support to the Judicial Advisory Committees. The role of the Commissioner's Office is to safeguard the independence of the judiciary and assess the qualification of lawyers and provincial court judges applying for federal judicial appointment.
- Federal judicial appointments are made by the Governor in Council, acting on the recommendations of the Minister of Justice.
- Government of Canada announces judicial appointments and reforms the appointments process to increase openness and transparency
- Frequently Asked Questions: Changes to the Appointments Process for Federal Judges
- Canada's Court System
- Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs
- Constitution Acts, 1867 to 1982
- Judges Act
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SOURCE Department of Justice Canada
For further information: media may contact: Kathleen Davis, Communications and Parliamentary Affairs Advisor, Office of the Minister of Justice, 613-992-4621; Media Relations, Department of Justice Canada, 613-957-4207, [email protected]