Making of the Charter: The Numbers

Making of the Charter: The Numbers


  • According to the Library of Parliament, the 1980-81 Special Joint Committee on the Constitution of Canada received 962 written submissions: 639 from individuals and 323 from groups. Half of the group submissions were mainly requests to appear in person.
  • There were 106 meetings across 56 days — a total of 267 hours and 3 minutes by February 1981.
  • Ninety-five groups and five individuals testified. The New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, P.E.I., Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, and Yukon governments provided testimony. Provincial parties also appeared: Alberta’s Social Credit and NDP, the Saskatchewan Progressive Conservatives, and Quebec’s Union Nationale.
  • Justice Minister Jean Chrétien and Solicitor General Robert Kaplan both appeared at nine meetings.

Which committee members attended the most meetings?

Serge Joyal, Liberal MP for Hochelaga–Maisonneuve, Que. 68
Ron Irwin, Liberal MP for Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. 61
Eymard Corbin, Liberal MP for Madawaska–Victoria, N.B. 59
Robert Bockstael, Liberal MP for Saint Boniface, Man. 58
Bryce Mackasey, Liberal MP for Lincoln, Ont. 58
Lorne Nystrom, NDP MP for Yorkton–Melville, Sask. 58

-Andrew Thomson