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More than half of Liberals’ appointed judges are women – The Globe and Mail

by pmnationtalk on May 12, 2017222 Views

The Liberal government is reshaping the bench, appointing a substantial majority of women, even though they make up a minority of applicants. The approach is winning praise from some in the legal community, while sparking concern about “quotas” from others.

A year and a half after taking office, the government has appointed 56 judges, of whom 33 are women – 59 per cent. Yet women make up only 42 per cent of the 795 people who have applied to be judges since the Liberals put in place a new appointment process in October.

Making federal institutions more reflective of Canadian diversity has been a theme of the Liberal government. Its cabinet has an equal number of men and women, and it announced a plan last week to ensure more women and minorities are named to federally funded research chair positions at universities.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould says a more diverse bench will build the public’s confidence in the judiciary. “We are beginning to demonstrate how it is possible to have a bench that truly reflects the country we live in,” she said in an e-mail to The Globe and Mail.

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