The Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today issued the following statement on the retirement of the Honourable Rosalie Silberman Abella, puisne Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada.
“On behalf of all Canadians, I wish to express my gratitude to Justice Abella for her service on the Supreme Court of Canada over the past 17 years. Throughout her distinguished career, Justice Abella has offered exceptional wisdom and expertise that has resonated throughout Canada’s legal system and society as a whole.
“Her many accomplishments are too long to list here, but I want to acknowledge her unique ability to bring a human dimension to her decision making. It is something special and the Court has benefited enormously from it.
“Although she is stepping away from the bench, Justice Abella plans to continue sharing her wealth of knowledge and expertise to help inspire the next generation of legal practitioners. She will serve as the Samuel and Judith Pisar Visiting Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, a senior research scholar at Yale Law School, and a distinguished visiting jurist at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law.
“Justice Abella helped shape and improve this country, and I look forward to her further contributions in the years to come.”
- Justice Abella was called to the Ontario Bar in 1972 and practised civil and criminal litigation until 1976. She was appointed to the Ontario Court of Appeal in 1992, and to the Supreme Court of Canada in 2004.
- She was Chair and author of the Ontario Study on Access to Legal Services by the Disabled in 1983.
- Justice Abella’s report for the Royal Commission on Equality in Employment has been implemented by the governments of Canada, New Zealand, Northern Ireland and South Africa.
- She served as Chair of the Ontario Labour Relations Board (1984 to 1989), Chair of the Ontario Law Reform Commission (1989 to 1992), and as a commissioner on the Ontario Human Rights Commission. She was also a member of the Premier’s Advisory Committee on Confederation.