The law school at Trinity Western University has acquired accreditation in New Brunswick, according to Metro News.
The vote to accredit the law school took place on Friday, with the Law Society of New Brunswick voting by a 14 to 5 count to approve the law school, which is located in Langley, British Columbia. The law school is Christian-based and has received opposition from lesbian and gay rights groups due to a ‘community covenant’ that students are required to sign.
“The council always will recognize both religious freedoms and the right to sexual orientation without discrimination,” wrote John Malone, president of the society, according to Metro News. “No matter which law school they graduate from, all articled students complete Law Society training and evaluation. This includes the core aspects of professional responsibility, including non-discrimination.”
The law school was approved in December of 2013 by the Federal of Law Societies of Canada and the B.C. Ministry of Advanced Education. The school has already received approval votes for accreditation in Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia. But, earlier this month, lawyers in British Columbia voted to overturn the decision by the Law Society at a special meeting. The vote was non-binding.
Nova Scotia and Ontario voted against the law school, but those votes are being challenged by the school.
“Evangelical Christianity is an important part of the Canadian cultural mosaic,” said TWU president Bob Kuhn in a statement, according to Metro News. “In a free and democratic society the faith of TWU graduates cannot preclude them from practicing law.”