Written by: Fay Faraday

This publication was created as part of LEAF’s Feminist Strategic Litigation (FSL) Project. The FSL Project examines the use and impact of feminist strategic litigation to help LEAF, feminists, and gender equality advocates more effectively combat systemic discrimination and oppression.

Recognizing that the legal fight for equality remains a work in progress, this report examines how the landscape of Canadian equality rights litigation has evolved since 1985. It looks both at how the legal meaning of equality has evolved and how feminists have developed distinct ways of working to advance equality. The report examines:  

(i) strengths and successes of feminist litigation; 

(ii) areas in which feminist litigation has not gained traction, has faced resistance or has encountered losses; 

(iii) areas which have yet to be explored or are under-developed and so present opportunities for future action; 

(iv) strategies that various legal and political actors have adopted to push back at feminist litigation; 

(v) changes in legal procedures that affect the availability or effectiveness of different litigation options; and 

(vi)  the perpetual concern about resources. 

This report aims to provide a base of information and analysis from which LEAF and equality advocates can think critically and strategically about how to move forward.

See the executive summaries in English and French below. You can also download the complete report, available in English only.

To learn more about opportunities for feminist strategic litigation in the current moment, check out our webinar on Opportunities Moving Forward.