Beverley Baines is a Professor of Public and Constitutional Law with a passion for illuminating the legal strategies the patriarchal state deploys to deny women their right to equality which is guaranteed in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Her passion dates from her involvement as a feminist constitutional consultant, first to the Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women and then to the Ad Hoc Committee of Women on the Constitution during the Charter debates of 1980-1982.

Professor Baines earned a BA Hons (Economics and Political Science) from McGill and a JD from Queen’s, following which she articled with Trumpour and Kennedy in Kingston, joined Queen’s Law as a faculty member, was admitted to the Law Society of Upper Canada, and served as Associate Dean in the Faculty of Law (1994-1997). Seconded twice to the Faculty of Arts and Science, she was Co-Coordinator of the Institute of Women’s Studies (1991-1993) and Head of the Department of Gender Studies (2004-2011).

Professor Baines co-edited two books on women and constitutional law: The Gender of Constitutional Jurisprudence (2005) and Feminist Constitutionalism: Global Perspectives (2012). She has published papers and delivered international conference presentations that focus on giving voice to the intersectional claims of religious women living polygamously, accessing faith-based family law arbitrations, and wearing the niqab in Ontario courtrooms or when delivering and receiving public services in Quebec. She also writes about gender and the legal profession, including the Trinity Western law school controversy, United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s call for the appointment of nine women justices on the American Supreme Court, and the history of women law professors in Canada.


  • Sex equality rights under the Charter
  • Intersectionality and the Charter
  • Gender, Religion, and the Charter
  • Women Judges
  • Women Law Professors

Recent Accomplishments

  • Law Students’ Society Teaching Award, 2012
  • Head, Department of Gender Studies, Faculty of Arts & Science, Queen's 2004-2011
  • Organized second International Conference on Feminist Constitutionalism, Queen’s University, with Professors Daphne Barak-Erez and Tsvi Kahana (2009)
  • Organized First International Conference on Women and Constitutional Law, University of Seville, with Professor Ruth Rubio-Marin (2000)
  • Associate Dean, Faculty of Law 1994–1997
  • Co-Coordinator, Institute of Women’s Studies, Faculty of Arts & Science, Queen’s University, 1991–1993.  


  • Beverley Baines, Daphne Barak-Erez, Tsvi Kahana (eds.). Feminist Constitutionalism: Global Perspectives. New York: Cambridge, 2012.
  • Beverley Baines and Ruth Rubio-Marin, The Gender of Constitutional Jurisprudence. New York: Cambridge, 2004.

Articles and Book Chapters:

  • “Women Judges on Constitutional Courts: Why not nine women?” in Helen Irving ed., Constitutions and Gender (Edward Elgar Research Handbook, forthcoming 2017)
  • “Constitutionalizing Women’s Equality Rights: There is Always Room for Improvement” (2015/16) 37.2 (1) Atlantis 112-119.
  • “Polygamy: Who Speaks for Women? in Kim Rubenstein and Katharine G. Young (eds.), The Public Law of Gender: From the Local to the Global (Cambridge University Press, 2016), 219-245.
  • “Must Feminist Judges Self-identify as Feminist” in Ulrike Schultz and Gisela Shaw (eds.), Gender and Judging (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2013) 369-388.
  • “Banning the Niqab in the Canadian Courtroom: Different Standards for Judges” (2013) Jurist Forum January 24, 2013
  • “Comparing Women in Canada” (2012) 20 (no.2) Feminist Legal Studies 89-103.
  • “Polygamy and Feminist Constitutionalism” in B. Baines, D. Barak-Erez, and T. Kahana, eds., Feminist Constitutionalism: Global Perspectives (Cambridge University Press, 2012) 452-73.
  • “The Challenge of our Charter Identity” (2012) 21 no. 2 Canadian Bar National 30-33.
  • “Gender Equality in the Constitution: Canadian Experience” (Anayasa'da Kadın-Erkek Eşitliği: Kanada Tecrübesi) in Dr. Fatih Ozturk (ed.), Road Map for the New Constitution (Yeni Anayasa İçin Yol Haritası) (Istanbul, 2012).  


  • “Personalizing Feminist Critique” to Legal Research Methods and Perspectives Law 880, Queen’s University Faculty of Law, October 11, 2016.
  • “Does Sex Equality Have a Future?” at Section 15 of the Charter Conference, Osgoode Hall Law School, May 13, 2016
  • “Identifying Canada’s First Women Law Professors” at Gender and Careers in the Legal Academy Conference of International Working Group for Comparative Studies of Legal Professions, Women/Gender in the Legal Profession Subgroup, Schonburg/Oberwesel, Germany, May 8-11, 2016
  • “Canada: Framing Litigation as Constitution-Enhancing” at Gender and Constitution-Making Workshop, European University Institute, Florence, Italy, October 16-17, 2015
  • “Constitutional Culture and Competing Rights” at Constitutional Culture: Identities, Texts, Institutions Conference, Faculty of Law, Queen’s University, October 2-3, 2015
  • “Designing Canadian Parity: Preliminary Thoughts” at Women and Legal Pluralism: Extending Parity Governance? Workshop at European University Institute Florence Italy Feb 13-14, 2015
  • “Religion, Sexuality and Lawyering: Two Canadian Feminist Perspectives” presentation to doctoral student seminar Gender and Sexuality Across the Disciplines II at European University Institute, Faculty of Law, Florence Italy February 12, 2015.
  • “Beyond Competing Rights” at Women, Equality and Religious Rights Symposium, LEAF, Toronto January 30, 2015