|Ontario (AG) v Canada Temperance Federation|
|Court||Judicial Committee of the Privy Council|
|Decided||21 January 1946|
|Citation(s)|| UKPC 2,  AC 193|
|Appealed from||Court of Appeal of Ontario|
|Judges sitting||Viscount Simon, Lord Thankerton, Lord Roche, Lord Greene, Lord Goddard|
|Decision by||Viscount Simon|
Ontario (AG) v Canada Temperance Federation was a famous Canadian constitutional decision of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council and was among the first cases to examine the peace, order, and good government power of the Constitution Act, 1867. This was the first decision to bring back the "national concerns" branch of peace, order, and good government since it was first suggested in the Local Prohibitions case.
In presenting its case, Ontario argued:
In September 1939, the Court of Appeal by a majority (Riddell, Fisher, McTague and Gillanders JJA) gave the following answer:
This Court is of opinion (Mr Justice Henderson dissenting) that Parts I, II and III of the Canada Temperance Act ... are within the legislative competence of the Parliament of Canada.
Ontario appealed the ruling to the Privy Council.
The ruling was upheld by the Board. As to the arguments raised by Ontario,
In their Lordships' opinion, the true test must be found in the real subject matter of the legislation: if it is such that it goes beyond local or provincial concern or interests and must from its inherent nature be the concern of the Dominion as a whole (as, for example, in the Aeronautics case and the Radio case), then it will fall within the competence of the Dominion Parliament as a matter affecting the peace, order and good government of Canada, though it may in another aspect touch on matters specially reserved to the provincial legislatures.
This became the foundation of the "national dimensions" test.
Many decisions to follow struggled to reconcile this case with that of Russell, which seem to give contradictory interpretations of the nature of "peace, order and good government". Though not stated by Simon, the decision effectively overturned Russell.