More than 8,000 lawyers in British Columbia have voted, and a majority rule that Langley’s Trinity Western University’s school of law will not be recognized.
In a release issued just minutes ago, TWU acknowledged the decision, announcing disappointment at the ruling.
While the Langley Advance will delve into the issue further, we wanted to bring you the basics immediately.
For now, here’s a copy of the release issued by TWU:
The Law Society of British Columbia (LSBC) announced today that its members voted by referendum against recognizing graduates of Trinity Western Universityâ€™s School of Law.
â€œThe University is disappointed with this voteâ€, said Trinity Western University spokesperson Guy Saffold.
â€œTrinity Western believes in diversity and the rights of all Canadians to their personal beliefs and values. A personâ€™s ability to study and practise the law should not be restricted by their faith."
The referendum process is unprecedented, and the result has no effect without a resolution of the Benchers declaring that the TWU School of Law is not an approved faculty of law.
â€œThe benchers still have the opportunity to do the right thing, and we are encouraging them to think very carefully before passing any resolution against TWU,â€ said Saffold.
The issue concerns Trinity Western’s requirement that students observe a set of Christian behavioural standards, including one that recognizes the traditional Christian belief that sexual activity should only occur within a traditional marriage between a man and a woman.
Despite the fact gay and lesbian students attend and graduate from the university, critics claim the university’s "Community Covenant" is discriminatory towards gay and lesbian students and that therefore, the university’s law school graduates should not be licensed to practise law.
Founded in 1962, TWU has been a part of higher education in British Columbia for over 52 years. TWU has six professional schools, including business, nursing, education, human kinetics, graduate studies and arts, media and culture.
The School of Law will be its seventh.
Trinity Western University is a Christian university of the arts, sciences, and professions. Recognized for quality, TWU is consistently ranked among the top two universities in Canada for Educational Experience by the National Survey of Student Engagement; holds four Canada Research Chairs; wins National Championships in CIS sports; and emphasizes experiential learning to prepare graduates to make a global impact. TWU offers 42 bachelorâ€™s degrees, 17 graduate degrees, and adult degree-completion programs. A vibrant community committed to educating the whole person, TWU has been developing leaders of character and competence for 52 years.
â€¢ Stay tuned to the online and print edition of the Langley Advance for more on this breaking news story