|The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms forms a part of the Canadian Constitution and sets out the rights and freedoms believed necessary to a free and democratic Canadian society. It came into effect on 17 April 1982 as a part of the package of reforms contained in the Constitution Act, 1982. The Charter covers subjects including:
Freedom of expression;
Right to live and seek employment anywhere in Canada;
Legal rights of persons accused of criminal offences;
Rights of Aboriginal Peoples;
Rights to equality, including that between women and men;
Protection of cultural heritage; and
Right to use either of Canada’s official languages.
As the Charter is a part of the Constitution, other Canadian laws which limit its protections may be rendered invalid. Similarly, governments must attempt to ensure that new laws proposed are consistent with it.