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David Asper Centre for Constitutional Rights names constitutional-litigator-in-residence

Monday, May 28, 2018 @ 11:57 AM | By Carolyn Gruske


Susan Ursel, an employment and human rights lawyer, will serve as the constitutional-litigator-in-residence at the University of Toronto’s David Asper Centre for Constitutional Rights.

Ursel is a partner at Ursel Phillips Fellows Hopkinson LLP where she practises in the areas of labour, employment, pay equity, employment equity and human rights law, as well as pensions and benefits law.

According to the biography published on the Aspen Centre website, she “was senior counsel to the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation in its successful Charter challenge to Bill 115, an act which imposed collective agreements upon education sector unions in 2012. She has represented the Canadian Bar Association in its intervention in the Trinity Western University v. Law Society of Upper Canada case in the Ontario Court of Appeal.”

Ursel has also appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada in cases involving the equality rights of gay men and lesbians and the educational rights of children in gay and lesbian families. She has also worked to obtain rights for transsexual and transgender individuals and communities.

As constitutional-litigator-in-residence, Ursel will will be teaching constitutional advocacy in the Asper Centre clinic during the 2018 academic fall term and will mentor students on the case files that they will be working on in the clinic.

“Susan Ursel’s wealth of litigation experience and work in the human rights field, especially in seeking equality rights, will add an exciting dimension to the clinic this coming term” said Asper Centre executive director Cheryl Milne.

“I am very much anticipating the exciting and fascinating work with the Asper Centre this year. Constitutional issues and litigation have been a passion of mine for many years and I am honoured to be doing this work with the Asper Centre which is renowned for its constitutional expertise and for its exceptional educational programs. My thanks to the centre for inviting me to work with them,” said Ursel.

The Asper Centre describes itself as being devoted to realizing constitutional rights through advocacy, research and education. It operates a legal clinic that brings together students, faculty and members of the bar to work on significant constitutional cases and advocacy initiatives.