Starting in Volume 57, the McGill Law Journal became the first Canadian law journal to launch a significant podcast series. In the years since, our podcasts have explored many of the most important issues in Canadian law, including debates about criminal justice or the structure of Canadian Federalism, as well as international issues like humanitarian crises or emerging norms like the legal personality of the environment. Each episode features interviews from prominent academics, practitioners, and other experts, many of whom have been directly involved in debates and decisions that continue to shape the law in Canada and around the world.

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Our episodes
Posted on 2 Dec 2021

Seeds of Sovereignty: Indigenous Rights and Canadian Cannabis Law

Three years following the legalization of cannabis in Canada, the role of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit peoples in regulating cannabis has yet to be adequately addressed, creating a state of legal uncertainty over questions about jurisdiction and control. Despite this uncertainty, some Indigenous nations have nonetheless begun to assert their inherent rights to self-government and regulate cannabis according to their own customs and laws. In this episode, we explore both the challenges the Cannabis Act has posed for Indigenous governments and cannabis entrepreneurs, as well as the flourishing “red market” of cannabis businesses that operate and are licensed under Indigenous laws and frameworks.

Posted on 15 Sep 2021

Contracts of Silence: How NDAs can silence victims and cover up wrongdoing

Traditionally used to protect trade secrets and proprietary information, non-disclosure agreements are now regularly found in employment contracts and settlement agreements of all kinds. But these agreements can also operate as oppressive contracts of silence – particularly when invoked to prevent victims of discrimination, harassment, or abuse from speaking out about their experiences. In this episode, we talk to Dr. Julie Macfarlane about the questionable legality of non-disclosure agreements, and how legislative reform could restrict their ability to perpetuate harm.

Posted on 16 Apr 2021

My Body, My Rules? Challenges Facing the Canadian Government During the COVID-19 Pandemic

In this special mini-episode, we discuss government responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the challenges that continue to be faced. Our guest is Lorian Hardcastle, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of Calgary. Professor Hardcastle’s research covers a wide range of health-related topics, including public health law and policy, regulation and governance of the health care system, and liability and governance of health facilities.

Posted on 16 Apr 2021

2) Le processus de nomination judiciaire : à l’abri de la partisanerie politique?

Lors du dernier épisode, nous avons mis en lumière, en compagnie du président de l’Association du barreau canadien, Brad Regehr, le processus de nomination de la magistrature aux cours supérieures du Canada. Dans cet épisode, nous situerons le processus de nomination judiciaire dans son contexte politique plus large. Notre invité est Patrick Taillon, professeur à la Faculté de droit de l’Université Laval.
Posted on 16 Apr 2021

1) The Judicial Nomination Process: Promoting Independence and Diversity

In Part 1 of our two-part series on judicial independence, we dive into the judicial appointment process of the superior courts of Canada to get a better sense of the stakes involved for both prospective judges and broader society. This episode features an insightful interview with Brad Regehr, President of the Canadian Bar Association, who discusses the CBA’s approach to these complex issues.

Posted on 13 Apr 2021

Ethics Meets Law: Applying Medical Assistance in Dying Legislation in Quebec

In this episode, we explore how Medical Assistance in Dying legislation works on the ground, asking what challenges continue to face medical practitioners and patients when applying its criteria. We also ask broader questions about the meaning of capacity, proportionality, the role of conscientious objection, and, finally, what remains excluded from the law. Our guest is Nicky Fraser, clinical nurse specialist in MAID at the MUHC.
Posted on 2 Apr 2021

A ‘Share’ of the Blame: Human Rights, Government Action, and Corporate Accountability

In this episode, we delve into Canadian and international legal avenues available to victims of human rights abuses; we evaluate Canada’s State Immunity Act; and we theorize on the future of state and corporate accountability both in Canada and internationally. We are joined by Amanda Ghahremani, an international lawyer, legal consultant and research associate. Most recently, she was a member of the legal team for the plaintiffs in the Supreme Court case of Nevsun Resources Ltd v. Araya.
Posted on 26 Mar 2021

The New Normal: Taxation in a Time of Transformation

This episode explores how governments are beginning to re-think tax policy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our guests are two Osgoode Hall Law School professors: Jinyan Li, co-academic director of the LLM tax program, and Scott Wilkie, a tax law practitioner and a former chair of the Canadian Tax Foundation.

Posted on 19 Mar 2021

AI Governance: A Global Problem

This episode focuses on various elements and models of AI governance and regulation, as well as the related topics of AI agency, liability and algorithmic bias. It features an insightful interview with Me Maroussia Lévesque, whose dissertation focuses on developing a polycentric model of AI governance.

Posted on 12 Mar 2021

Le rapatriement des objets culturels autochtones au Canada

Au cours de cet épisode, notre équipe explore les obstacles juridiques, politiques et sociaux au rapatriement des objets culturels autochtones au Canada. Notre invité est Me François Le Moine, qui pratique en droit des arts et en droit d’auteur, et qui enseigne le droit des arts et du patrimoine culturel à l’Université de Montréal.