Chartier Likes Idea of Native Judge on High Court

Wednesday, August 25, 2004 at 13:14



Metis National Council president Clem Chartier thinks appointing an Aboriginal person to the Supreme Court is a good idea, but not for the reasons you might expect.


Chartier says the presence of an Aboriginal justice on the high court would increase the level of awareness and understanding of issues facing native people.


But he doesn’t think having a native person on the Supreme Court would or should influence decisions on Aboriginal rights.


Chartier also notes that last year’s landmark Powley decision on Metis hunting rights was reached by a panel of non-Aboriginal justices.


Chartier is quite confident the government doesn’t choose Supreme Court justices on the basis of how they would vote on contentious issues, like Aboriginal rights.


However, Chartier feels having Aboriginal representation on the high court would help erase any doubts that native people might have about the court’s integrity.