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Petition to the Government of Canada

  • The Canadian Judicial Council was created by Parliament so that Canadians could express their concerns about the conduct of federally appointed judges;
  • The exclusive presence of judges in the complaints review process makes it difficult to view ethical misconduct on the part of a colleague through a totally impartial lens;
  • Studies have raised doubts about whether it is possible to provide a completely independent review of complaints because of professional ties;
  • Certain behaviours exhibited by a judge require interpretation under the code of ethics, and it would be important to seek multiple opinions in order to adequately consider the admissibility of a complaint;
  • There is no citizen participation in the process for handling public complaints about federally appointed judges; and
  • The decision cannot be appealed to an independent body.
We, the undersigned, citizens of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to modernize the complaints review panel of the Canadian Judicial Council by:
1. Instituting a joint committee consisting of citizen representatives and judicial representatives to consider the admissibility of complaints and follow up;
2. Making the process for citizens to apply and be appointed to various Canadian Judicial Council panels transparent; and
3. Creating an appeal procedure for the complaints review panel.

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