Ontario NDP Says Arbitration Has No Place in Family LawMonday, July 26 2010
July 4th, 2005: TORONTO, Canada – In a statement published on their website, the provincial NDP party has called on the Liberal government to end the use of arbitration for family legal matters.
“Ontario New Democrats believe …there is sufficient evidence to conclude arbitration has no place in family law.”
“This is great news for me and all my fellow activists”, said Homa Arjomand, Coordinator of the International Campaign Against Sharia Court in Canada. “We’re so encouraged to hear the NDP respond to the evidence of human rights abuse…so many women and children in Ontario have suffered when family legal matters are arbitrated based on religious laws, we’re now very hopeful the McGuinty government will come to the same conclusion and will end this injustice”. added Ms. Arjomand.
“We started our campaign to end private religious courts 20 months ago with a handful of supporters, and today we have a strong coalition of over 80 organizations and 1000’s of activists. Together we will continue to fight this law until it is changed”. said Ms. Arjomand.
The NDP statement also called on the McGuinty government to make legal aid more available for family legal matters, and to increase the funding for both independent legal advice and the Family Court system. “…we fully support these recommendations”, said Homa Arjomand.
The position of the NDP differs with the Boyd Report. In December 2004, Marion Boyd, former Attorney General under Bob Rae, recommended the Liberal Government continue to permit the arbitration of family legal matters based on religious laws. Recommendation number 2, on page 133 of her report, reads as follows: “The Arbitration Act should continue to allow disputes to be arbitrated using religious law”.