The Ontario Superior Court of Justice has ruled in favour of the Ryerson Students’ Union’s right to deny funding for Students for Life at Ryerson.
The SFLR claimed in 2015 that the RSU denied their club status and discriminated against them, since the SFLR called for freedom of expression and are a pro-life group.
“One of the reasons why RSU rejected us was because our mandate contradicts their opinion on sexual reproductive rights […].” said Carter Grant, then vice-president of Students for Life, in an article by Ryersonian on February 25, 2015.
According to Ryersonian, “the group was rejected on the basis that the RSU ‘opposes…groups, meetings, or events that promote misogynist views towards women and ideologies that promote gender inequity, challenges women’s right to bodily autonomy, or justifies sexual assault.’”
The SFLR will still be able to maintain their presence and host events on the Ryerson campus, regardless of the court hearing.
This case parallels a similar lawsuit at UTM. As previously reported by The Medium, UTMSU is engaged in a lawsuit with UTM Students for Life, a pro-life activist group.
Last January, UTMSFL stated on their website that UTMSU denied to renew their club status last year, and so UTMSFL were unable to utilize the student union resources, such as the Student Center, and were also barred from participating during Clubs Week in September 2015.
Diane Zettel, an applicant in the case and the former president of UTMSFL, told The Medium last September that the court date was expected to be set last June, but the case was not able to reach a hearing, as UTMSFL was waiting to hear the results of the Ryerson case first.
Zettel did not respond to The Medium’s request to know if the date of the hearing will be set soon, now that Ryerson’s case has been cleared.
Nour Alideeb, UTMSU’s president stated in an email to The Medium that no compromises have been reached yet.
“We are hopeful that the verdict for UTMSU will be similar to that of Ryerson’s,” stated Alideeb.
As of press time, it is unknown if a court date has been set.