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CAIR-Canada Welcomes Recommendations on Faith-Based Arbitration


(OTTAWA, CANADA – 21/12/2004) – The Canadian Council on American-Islamic
Relations (CAIR-CAN) today welcomed the comprehensive recommendations
proposed by Marion Boyd in her review of the use of arbitration in family
and inheritance cases in the province of Ontario. Boyd has recommended the
continuance of faith-based arbitration as a valid alternative in family and
inheritance cases subject to a number of safeguards.

In its meeting with Ms. Boyd in early August 2004, CAIR-CAN proposed
recommendations such as independent legal advice, extensive community
education, safeguards for the training and qualifications of arbitrators,
and a registry of arbitration decision. For CAIR-CAN’s position paper,

Boyd’s recommendations include extensive conditions for an arbitration
agreement to be valid; that parties receive independent legal advice and a
statement of faith-based principles; public and community education; and
closer oversight and evaluation of arbitrators.

In a statement released today, CAIR-CAN wrote:

“Marion Boyd’s recommendations offer practical and comprehensive solutions
to the general issue of faith-based arbitration that recognize both the
value of faith-based arbitration and the challenges associated with its

“Far from stigmatizing one community or providing a chauvinistic and
one-sided analysis, Ms. Boyd has attempted to address issues of power
imbalances, and the lack of transparency and accountability within the
arbitration system. Her recommendations provide for oversight and
reporting mechanisms, along with an extensive list of legal safeguards.

“We hope that the Ontario government gives her recommendations the
attention they merit and proceeds with this issue in the same spirit and


Mihad Fahmy, Director of Legal Affairs, at 613-254-9704
Abdurahman Salman, Communications, at 613-254-9704; 613-795-2012


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