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Alberta Bill of Rights

The Alberta Bill of Rights which was assented to March 27, 1946 consists of two main parts. Part I, sets forth eight essential freedoms ranging from freedom of religion to freedom of opportunity. Part II provides the machinery for controlling the issue of credit by the banks of  Alberta as the means whereby Part I shall be achieved. The Alberta Court of Appeals held that Part I deals with property and civil rights in the Province, "a subject matter on which the Province has the right to legislate.” However, Part II was ultra vires since it deals with banks and banking, "a subject matter on which parliament (of Canada) is given the right to legislate." An appeal to the Privy Council resulted in the ruling, on July 24, 1947, that the entire act is invalid, Since the aims projected by Part I were felt to be dependent upon  the program of credit set up by Part II it was felt that consequently the complete Bill of Rights was invalid.

Handwritten note: “of such a nature that even Privy Council called it invalid”



Saskatchewan Bill of Rights Act 1947

The Saskatchewan Bill of Rights was assented to April 1, 1947. “This Bill of Rights stresses tolerance, forbearance, and moderation. Persecution and discrimination are as contagious as disease and no citizen is safe no matter where he may live as long as they exist and flourish anywhere in the world.”

“Every person in Saskatchewan irrespective of race, creed, religion, colour or ethnic or national origin shall enjoy the right….to employment….to engage in business….to own and occupy property….to enter and use public places, hotels etc…..to membership in professional and trade societies….to education and enrolment in schools and universities.”

Handwritten note: “Nothing specific laid down – only rights we already have.”

Handwritten note: “On examination of statutes based in the provinces in connection with Bills of Rights I find in home prov of friends of oft”



  1. Manitoba Bill of Rights Act 1947

The Manitoba Bill of Rights was introduced by Mr. M. A. Gray, M.L.A., in the Manitoba legislature. It was defeated by a vote of 32 to 18 with members of the Liberal government as well as C.C.F. members voting in favour of it.

The Bill guarantees in its first six articles the basic civil liberties of the land such as the right to freedom of conscience and the right to vote at elections, etc. The next six articles protect the civil rights of the individual. The right to employment….to engage in occupation….to own and occupy property….to access to public places….to membership in professional and trade associations….to education. Article 13 prohibits the publishing, displaying or broadcasting of any representations likely to restrict, because of race, or creed any person from the enjoyment of any right to which he is entitled under the law.

  1. Amendment to the Newspaper Act

This amendment was assented to April 5, 1934. Section 10 of the Newspaper Act was amended so as to require that “every printed advertisement….shall bear upon its face….the name and address of its printer or publisher, and any person…distributing or posting up such a document unless it bears upon its face such name and address, shall be liable to a penalty.”

  1. Section XIV (Race or Creed Libel) of the Manitoba Libel Act

Section XIV known as the Hyman Act, is the incorporation of Bill Number 65 (assented to April 6, 1934) into the Revised Statutes of Manitoba.

It provides that “the publication of a libel against a race or creed likely to expose persons belonging to the race or creed….to ridicule…and tending to raise unrest or disorder….shall entitle a person belonging to the race….to sue for an injunction.”



Speech by John Diefenbaker at the Young Progressive Conservative Convention, Ottawa

Speech by John Diefenbaker to a Progressive Conservative banquet, Ottawa

Speech by John Diefenbaker to the Progressive Conservative Women’s Association, Ottawa


186000-8 Re: Bill of Rights – Amendment to Constitution

Confidential copy of Bill C - An Act for the Recognition and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms

Supplementary and Consolidated Suggestions Concerning the Proposed Bill of Rights

The Bill of Rights is Wrong

Letter from T.C. Douglas to John Diefenbaker

The PM’s Bill of Rights Freedom’s Advocate

Letter from Davie Fulton to John Diefenbaker

Orders-in-Council Threaten Your Citizenship

Our Bill of Rights

Provincial Bill of Rights Statutes – Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba

Letter from Byrne Hope Sanders to John Diefenbaker

Should Canada Have a Bill of Rights?

What About the Japanese Canadians?

Classroom Resources

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