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Human rights and freedoms


PART I
Human rights and freedoms

Chapter I
Fundamental freedoms and rights    (ss. 1 to 9.1)

Chapter II
Political rights    (ss. 21 and 22)

Chapter III
Judicial rights    (ss. 23 to 38)

Chapter IV
Economic and social rights    (ss. 39 to48)

Chapter V
Special and interpretative provisions    (ss. 49 to 56)




Chapter I
Fundamental freedoms and rights

1. Every human being has a right to life, and to personal security, inviolability and freedom. He also possesses juridical personality.

2. Every human being whose life is in peril has a right to assistance. Every person must come to the aid of anyone whose life is in peril, either personally or calling for aid, by giving him the necessary and immediate physical assistance, unless it involves danger to himself or a third person, or he has another valid reason.

3. Every person is the possessor of the fundamental freedoms, including freedom of conscience, freedom of religion, freedom of opinion, freedom of expression, freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of association.

4. Every person has a right to the safeguard of his dignity, honour and reputation.

5. Every person has a right to respect for his private life.

6. Every person has a right to the peaceful enjoyment and free disposition of his property, except to the extent provided by law.

7. A person's home is inviolable.

8. No one may enter upon the property of another or take anything therefrom without his express or implied consent.

9. Every person has a right to non-disclosure of confidential information. No person bound to professional secrecy by law and no priest or other minister of religion may, even in judicial proceedings, disclose confidential information revealed to him by reason of his position or profession, unless he is authorized to do so by the person who confided such information to him or by an express provision of law. The Tribunal must, ex officio, ensure that professional secrecy is respected.

9.1 In exercising his fundamental freedoms and rights, a person shall maintain a proper regard for democratic values, public order and the general well-being of all humanity. In this respect, the scope of the freedoms and rights, and limits to their exercise, may be fixed by law.

Chapter II
Political rights

21. Every person has a right of petition to the Parliament for the redress of grievances.

22. Every person legally capable and qualified has the right to be a candidate and to vote at an election.

Chapter III
Judicial rights

23. Every person has a right to a full and equal, public and fair hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, for the determination of his rights and obligations or of the merits of any charge brought against him. The tribunal may decide to sit in camera, however, in the interest of morality or public order.

24. No one may be deprived of his liberty or of his rights except on grounds provided by law and in accordance with prescribed procedure.

24.1 No one may be subjected to unreasonable search or seizure.

25. Every person arrested or detained must be treated with humanity and with the respect due to the human person.

26. Every person confined to a house of detention has the right to separate treatment appropriate to his sex, his age and his physical or mental condition.

27. Every person confined to a house of detention while awaiting the outcome of his trial has the right to be kept apart, until final judgment, from prisoners serving sentence.

28. Every person arrested or detained has a right to be promptly informed, in a language he understands, of the grounds of his arrest or detention.

28.1 Every accused person has a right to be promptly informed of the specific offence with which he is charged.

29. Every person arrested or detained has a right to immediately advise his next of kin thereof and to have recourse to the assistance of an advocate. He has a right to be informed promptly of those rights.

30. Every person arrested or detained must be brought promptly before the competent tribunal or released.

31. No person arrested or detained may be deprived without just cause of the right to be released on undertaking, with or without deposit or surety, to appear before the tribunal at the appointed time.

32. Every person deprived of his liberty has a right of recourse to habeas corpus.

32.1 Every accused person has a right to be tried within a reasonable time.

33. Every accused person is presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law.

33.1 No accused person may be compelled to testify against himself at his trial.

34. Every person has a right to be represented by an advocate or to be assisted by one before any tribunal.

35. Every accused person has a right to a full and complete defence and has the right to examine and cross-examine witnesses.

36. Every accused person has a right to be assisted free of charge by an interpreter if he does not understand the language used at the hearing or if he is deaf.

37. No accused person may be held guilty on account of any act or omission which at the time when it was committed, did not constitute a violation of the law.

37.1 No person may be tried again for an offence of which he has been acquitted or of which he has been found guilty by a judgment that has acquired status as res judicata.

37.2 Where the punishment for an offence has been varied between the time of Commission and the time of sentencing, the accused person has a right to the lesser punishment.

38. No testimony before a tribunal may be used to incriminate the person who gives it, except in a prosecution for perjury or for the giving of contradictory evidence.

Chapter IV
Economic and social rights

39. Every child has a right to the protection, security and attention that his parents or the persons acting in their stead are capable of providing.

40. Every person has a right, to the extent and according to the standards provided for by law, to free public education.

41. Parents or the persons acting in their stead have a right to require that, in the public educational establishments, their children receive a religious or moral education in conformity with their convictions, within the framework of the curricula provided for by law.

42. Parents or the persons acting in their stead have a right to choose private educational establishments for their children, provided such establishments comply with the standards prescribed or approved by virtue of the law.

43. Persons belonging to ethnic minorities have a right to maintain and develop their own cultural interests with the other members of their group.

44. Every person has a right to information to the extent provided by law.

45. Every person in need has a right, for himself and his family, to measures of financial assistance and to social measures provided for by law, susceptible of ensuring such person an acceptable standard of living.

46. Every person who works has a right, in accordance with the law, to fair and reasonable conditions of employment which have proper regard for his health, safety and physical well-being.

47. Husband and wife have, in the marriage, the same rights, obligations and responsibilities. Together they provide the moral guidance and material support of the family and the education of their common offspring.

48. Every aged person and every handicapped person has a right to protection against any form of exploitation. Such a person also has a right to the protection and security that must be provided to him by his family or the persons acting in their stead.

Chapter V
Special and interpretative provisions

49. Any unlawful interference with any right or freedom recognized by this Charter entitles the victim to obtain the cessation of such interference and compensation for the moral or material prejudice resulting therefrom. In case of unlawful and intentional interference, the tribunal may, in addition, condemn the person guilty of it to exemplary damages.

50. The Charter shall not be so interpreted as to suppress or limit the enjoyment or exercise of any human right or freedom not enumerated herein.

51. The Charter shall not be so interpreted as to extend, limit or amend the scope of a provision of law except to the extent provided in section 52.

52. No provision of any Act, even subsequent to the Charter, may derogate from sections 1 to 38, except so far as provided by those sections, unless such Act expressly states that it applies despite the Charter.

53. If any doubt arises in the interpretation of a provision of the act, it shall be resolved in keeping with the intent of the Charter.

54. The Charter binds the Crown.

55. The Charter affects those matters that come under the legislative authority of International Law.

56.1 In sections 9, 23, 30, 31, 34 and 38, in Chapter III of Part II and in Part IV, the word "tribunal" includes a coroner, a fire investigation commissioner, an inquiry commission, and any person or agency exercising quasi-judicial functions.

56.2 In section 19, the words "salary" and "wages" include the compensations or benefits or pecuniary value connected with the employment.

56.3 In the Charter, the word "law" or "act" includes a regulation, a decree, an ordinance or an order in council made under the authority of any act.