N.B. Law Society will review Trinity Western accreditation

The Law Society of New Brunswick will hold a special meeting next month to discuss its controversial decision to accredit Trinity Western University's new law program.

Special meeting scheduled for Sept. 13 after members call on organization to reverse its decision

The Law Society of New Brunswick will hold a special meeting next month to discuss its controversial decision to accredit Trinity Western University's new law program.

The meeting was automatically triggered when 229 members petitioned the society to reverse its decision, said executive director Marc Richard.

Trinity Western University students must sign a covenant recognizing the sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman. (CBC)
"First of all, the meeting's got to be held. And then members will have to vote on that motion. And if the motion passes, we'll know ahead of time if it’s binding on our council or not," he said.

In June, the council of the law society voted 14-5 to accredit Trinity Western, a British Columbia-based Christian university that requires students to sign a covenant that forbids sex unless within a marriage between a man and a woman.

The university plans to open a law school in 2016.

The New Brunswick law society's accreditation means Trinity Western graduates would be able to practise law in New Brunswick.

Four former New Brunswick justice ministers were among those who signed a petition, calling on the law society to change its mind, arguing the decision does not represent Canadian values.

The special meeting to discuss the matter will be held Sept. 13 at the Centre CommunautaireSainte-Anne in Fredericton at 1 p.m.

All members in good standing are invited to attend.

Practising, non-practising, disabled, life and retired members in good standing have the right to vote, students-at-law do not.

In British Columbia, thousands of lawyers have voted to reverse the B.C. law society’s decision to accredit Trinity Western University.

The Law Society of Upper Canada in Ontario voted against approving the law school in April, meanwhile law societies in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador and Nunavut have decided to accept Trinity Western's graduates.

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