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Police Foundations

This guide is designed to give you access to various types of information in the criminal justice field.

Rule of Law

“The rule of law is a principle whereby the government and its officials along with all citizens, groups, businesses, and institutions, are subject to rules and regulations that are fair, just, and enforced uniformly.  Laws must also be public and widely known. The rule of law is designed to ensure that everyone is treated equally regardless of their social or economic status, or their race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation. Democracies must embrace the rule of law to ensure justice and equality for their citizens” (Lansford, 2017, pg. 37-38).

Lansford, T. (2017). Justice, policing, and the rule of law. Broomall, PA: National Highlights Inc.

The role of judges is to protect the rights and freedoms guaranteed under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Charter).

15. (1) Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

— Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms


Rule of Law

Common Law

"Both the civil law system and the common law system strive for certainty, stability, and predictability. The civl law achives these things thorugh a comprehensive civil code, with laws set out for all to see, understand and follow.  The common law achieves them chiefly by the legal principle of stare decisis, with judges following precendents based on the idea that similar cases should be treated in similar ways" (Fairlie & Sworden, 2014, pg. 45).

Fairlie, J., & Sworden, P. J. (2014). Introduction to law in Canada. Toronto: Edmond Montgomery Publications.

Common Law