December 21, 2015

In its years-long war to open a law school, Trinity Western University has won a significant battle.

The B.C. Supreme Court ruled in favour of the evangelical university and graduates from its proposed law school Dec. 10.

TWU is celebrating the win as "recognition of true Canadian diversity."

"TWU law graduates will only enrich the diversity that we celebrate as Canadians," said the president's senior adviser, Guy Saffold, in a press release.

The B.C. Law Society first voted to recognize graduates in April 2014 then reversed its decision in a vote a few months later, citing concerns that the university would discriminate against potential LGBT students.

TWU took the law society to court. Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson ruled in its favour Dec. 10 and reprimanded the law society, saying, "The benchers disabled their discretion."

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, which intervened in this court case, is calling it "a victory for the freedom of all Canadians."

In court, the Justice Centre argued the Charter of Rights and Freedoms gives groups the right to establish their own membership requirements.

That includes TWU's community covenant, which some called discriminatory for asking students to abstain from sex outside marriage between a man and a woman.

TWU says Alberta, Saskatchewan, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and the Yukon will recognize its law graduates, while Nova Scotia and Ontario law societies are still before the courts.