Komagata Maru Exhibit in the Osgoode Library

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Komagata Maru episode, when Canadian authorities turned away 376 migrants of South Asian origin aboard a Japanese steamship in Vancouver harbour. The South Asian Law Students’ Association (SALSA) at Osgoode Hall Law School will have launched Komagata Maru Week (March 10-15, 2013) and the Komagata Maru Reflections Project.

On May 23, 1914, the Komagata Maru sailed into Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet, carrying 376 passengers of Indian origin. However, the passengers on board the Japanese steamer were denied permission to enter Canada. Fears over Asian immigration at the time led the Canadian government to adopt a series of racist exclusionary policies against Chinese, Japanese and Indian migrants.

In the case of Indian migrants, Canada enacted the Continuous Journey RegulationThe Continuous Journey Regulation was an order-in-council that permitted entry to Canada only to migrants arriving in Canada by boat directly from their country of origin through a continuous journey and in possession of $200. Migrants who arrived on a boat that stopped anywhere between Canada and their country of origin or were in possession of less than $200 were denied entry. At the time, it was highly unlikely that migrants could make the journey from India to Canada without stopping en route. Moreover, the $200 fee was a considerable sum at the time, especially for Asian migrants. This regulation was designed to prevent Indian migration to Canada without being explicit in its intent.

For two months, passengers of the Komagata Maru sought to defy the Continuous Journey Regulation. While the passengers were not allowed to disembark the ship, supporters in Vancouver challenged the regulation on their behalf in court, ultimately unsuccessfully. The Komagata Maru sailed out of the Burrard Inlet on July 23, 1914 to the uncertain fates that awaited the ship’s passengers in Asia.

As part of the anniversary events, the Osgoode South Asian Law Students Association (SALSA) have set up in the Osgoode Library an exhibition of photos and images documenting the Komagata Maru incident. The photos are from the Komagata Maru Collection of the Sikh Heritage Museum of Canada. The exhibit will run throughout the week during regular library hours. The exhibit is free.

Refugee Appeal Division Decisions Now Available on Quicklaw

The Refugee Appeal Division (RAD), fourth division of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, was launched on December 15, 2012 and started releasing decisions mid last year. This new division considers appeals against decisions of the Refugee Protection Division to allow or reject claims for refugee protection.

All decisions of the Refugee Appeal Division are now available on Quicklaw, in English and in French, in the source Canada Immigration and Refugee Board, Refugee Appeal Division Decisions (for English decisions) and in the source Décisions de la Section d’appel des réfugiés de la CISR (for French decisions).

Please note that you can find the Canada Immigration and Refugee Board divisions’ decisions in the following sources on Quicklaw:

English Decisions

  • Canada Immigration and Refugee Board, Immigration Division Decisions
  • Canada Immigration and Refugee Board, Immigration Appeal Division Decisions
  • Canada Immigration and Refugee Board, Refugee Protection Division Decisions
  • Canada Immigration and Refugee Board, Refugee Appeal Division Decisions
  • Canada Immigration and Refugee Board, All Divisions, Group Source

French Decisions

  • Décisions de la Section de l’immigration de la CISR
  • Décisions de la Section d’appel de l’immigration de la CISR
  • Décisions de la Section de la protection des réfugiés de la CISR
  • Décisions de la Section d’appel des réfugiés de la CISR
  • Commission de l’immigration et du statut de réfugié du Canada, toutes sections, groupes de sources


Law Society of Upper Canada, Minutes of Convocation

The Law Society of Upper Canada announced today the launch of a new online resource that makes publicly accessible the Minutes and Transcripts of Convocation.  Members of the Bar and the public can full-text search the Minutes and Transcripts or browse the documents by date. The site contains the public versions of the Minutes of Convocation from April 1988 to the present, and the public Transcripts of Convocation from September 1991 to the present.

This new resource was a project of the Law Society’s Corporate Records & Archives and The Great Library.

Copies of the Minutes of Convocation for the period 1959-1982 are available in print in the Osgoode Library.

Case Law from Fastcase Now Integrated into HeinOnline

HeinOnline has recently announced a partnership with Fastcase to provide links to full-text copies of US federal and state cases from citations in articles on the HeinOnline service. Fastcase, which provides access to full-text primary law for US federal and all 50 state jurisdictions, is a leading next-generation legal research service that features powerful “best-case-first” tools that make research faster than ever.  This partnership allows Hein to provide federal and state case law powered by Fastcase to HeinOnline subscribers two ways:

1. Via Inline Hyperlinks: When viewing a document in HeinOnline, any references or citations to federal or state cases are highlighted in blue. Simply click the link for direct access to the full text of the case on Fastcase, without need to enter a username or other authentication.

2. Review by Citation: From the HeinOnline Welcom page, you will see a Fastcase tab near the top of the page. Use this tab to copy and past case citations into the search box provided, which will retrieve the full text of the case powered by Fastcase. In addition, there is a Direct Citation option which allows you to type in the volume, use a drop-down menu for the reporter abbreviation and enter the page number to find your citation. Note that Bluebook citation format must be used.

Both options will retrieve the full text of the case in Fastcase’s HTML format.

For more information or assistance, just ask any of the reference librarians.

Consolidated and Current South African Legislation Now Available Free Online

Consolidated and up-to-date versions of South African legislation are now available free online. The project is a joint venture between the South African Legal Information Institute (SAAFLI) and the University of Pretoria and was launched on Tuesday , January 21, 2014 by Judge Edwin Cameron of the Constitutional Court.

This new collection of South African legislation, which is both searchable and browsable, is available on two sites – the South Africa Consolidated Acts site on  SAFLII and also on a new Laws of South Africa site provided by the Oliver R Tambo Law Library of the University of Pretoria.

For more information about this, click here.

Change of Martinus Nijhoff Imprint

Martinus Nijhoff was the name of a prestigious publishing house founded in the 19th century in The Hague. (The Dutch poet bearing the same name was a grandson of the company’s founder). Martinus Nijhoff’s publishing program focused on the humanities and the, with an especially strong list for law. Nijhoff’s publishing record of extremely well produced and edited and widely-respected titles in both international and humanitarian law is commendable.

In the 1970′s the Nijhoff publishing house was acquired by Kluwer. Within Kluwer, the imprint Martinus Nijhoff Publishers was retained for its publication program in international law, human rights law, humanitarian law and international relations.

In 2003, the Martinus Nijhoff imprint was acquried from Kluwer by Brill. Since its beginnings in 1683, Brill has been based in Leiden, home of the oldest university in the Netherlands. Founded during the golden age of Dutch history and culture, Brill has had a rich publishing history, including the publication of Bayle’s influential Dictionnaire Historique et Critique, the inception of one of the first scholarly journals in Chinese studies T’oung Pao, the publication of the Nag Hammadi codices for UNESCO and a wealth of other major scholarly reference works.

When the Martinus Nijhoff Publishers program came to Brill from Kluwer in 2003, MNP was retained as one of Brill’s imprints and 2013 marked the 10th anniversary of that association. During this time, the Law publishing program developed into an important part of the overall Brill portfolio. Concomitant with the introduction of the new typographic style, the Martinus Nijhoff Publishers logo and branding will gradually be replaced by Brill Nijhoffin all books, journals, and associated marketing sites and materials.

Osgoode Librarian Tim Knight Awarded CALL Research Grant

The 2013 CALL/ACBD (Canadian Association of Law Libraries/Association canadienne des bibliothèques de droit) Research Grant of $3,000 has been awarded to Tim Knight, Head, Technical Services in the Osgoode Library, and Sarah Sutherland, Manager, Content and Partnerships at CanLII, for their project Exploring the Linked Data Application of KF Modified Classification.  This project will “explore the development of KF Modified as a linked data classification scheme”  involving “analysis of the Library of Congress initiative; developing an appropriate data model for KF Modified; formulating the conversion process; coding the classification data as linked data.”

For readers who are not librarians, Linked Data describes a method of publishing structured data so that it can be interlinked and become more useful, using standard web technologies to share information in a way that can be read automatically by computers. This enables data from different sources to be connected and queried. Linked Data is an important component of the new Resource Description and Access (RDA) standard for cataloguing library materials, officially implemented by the Library of Congress, other national libraries (including Library and Archives Canada) and the Osgoode Library in 2013.

The CALL/ACBD Research Grant was established in 1996 to provide members with financial assistance to carry out research in areas of interest to members and to the association.  Applicants must be a members of the Association and proposed projects must promote an understanding of legal information sources or law librarianship. Further information is available here.

Congratulations Tim and Sarah!