JUSTIN(e) BLAINEY / by Molly Schiot

In 1981, Justine Blainey won a spot on a Metro Toronto Hockey League Team (MTHL) called the Toronto Olympics. Despite making the team, she was denied the chance to play. This denial was attributed to MTHL regulations that did not permit women in the league. Blainey addressed a complaint to the Human Rights Commission but the Ontario Human Rights Code specifically allowed sexual discrimination in sports. Blainey chose to appeal the Ontario law. Initially, she lost the case in Ontario Supreme Court but won her case in the Ontario Court of Appeal in 1986. Charles Dubin, who was involved in the inquiry regarding Olympic sprinter Ben Johnson's steroid use, was the writer of the decision. Overall, she endured five different court cases before finally having her case heard by the Supreme Court of Canada in 1987. Despite the legal issues, she managed to play for several other MTHL teams including the Scarborough Young Bruins, Etobicoke Canucks and East Ender Ti-Cats. Many coaches had her listed on team rosters as Justin Blainey.

In 1981, Justine Blainey won a spot on a Metro Toronto Hockey League Team (MTHL) called the Toronto Olympics. Despite making the team, she was denied the chance to play. This denial was attributed to MTHL regulations that did not permit women in the league. Blainey addressed a complaint to the Human Rights Commission but the Ontario Human Rights Code specifically allowed sexual discrimination in sports. Blainey chose to appeal the Ontario law. Initially, she lost the case in Ontario Supreme Court but won her case in the Ontario Court of Appeal in 1986. Charles Dubin, who was involved in the inquiry regarding Olympic sprinter Ben Johnson's steroid use, was the writer of the decision. Overall, she endured five different court cases before finally having her case heard by the Supreme Court of Canada in 1987. Despite the legal issues, she managed to play for several other MTHL teams including the Scarborough Young Bruins, Etobicoke Canucks and East Ender Ti-Cats. Many coaches had her listed on team rosters as Justin Blainey.