Human rights

Learn about the Charter that protects your rights and what your rights and duties in Canada are.

The Charter protects your rights

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is part of Canada’s Constitution. It protects you from the moment you arrive in Canada.

The Charter:

  • sets out the values that Canadians live by
  • describes the kinds of personal human rights and freedoms we can expect in this country

Some of these include:

  • the right to:
    • life, liberty and personal security
    • a fair trial, that respects all your legal rights
    • be presumed innocent until you’re proven guilty
    • talk to a lawyer as soon as possible if you are arrested
    • equal protection and benefit under the law, without discrimination
  • freedom of:
    • conscience and religion
    • thought, belief, opinion and expression
    • the press and other media
  • freedom to:
    • join groups
    • hold peaceful meetings
  • protection from:
    • unreasonable search or seizure
    • being detained or put in prison without a just reason

Rights come with duties

People who live in Canada are expected to:

  • understand and obey Canadian laws
  • help protect Canada's multicultural heritage
  • allow other Canadians to enjoy their rights and freedoms

If you live in Canada, you should become informed about politics and help to improve your communities and the country.

Citizens of Canada have other rights and freedoms, such as the right to vote in elections. To learn about these rights, read the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

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