Dalhousie Law Journal


commission counsel, commission of inquiry, legal history, public administration, Canada, Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms


Commissions of inquiry have been prominently featured in this country for decades. For instance the Durham Report on the 1837 Mackenzie- Papineau Rebellion was the product of a public inquiry. As well, other inquiries have played a pivotal role in the development of our public and economic life. We had, for example, the Rowell-Sirois Commission on Dominion-Provincial Relations, the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism, the McDonald Commission on the Economy, the Dubin Inquiry on Aviation Safety and the Estey Inquiry on Bank Failures to mention a few. In 1979, the Law Reform Commission of Canada estimated that there had been 400 full-blown public inquiries and close to 1500 departmental investigations held since Confederation.