Palbinder Kaur Shergill is the first turbaned (Amritdhari) Sikh woman to be appointed Judge of the Supreme Court of British Columbia in New Westminster. Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of Canada, announced the appointment under the new judicial application process announced on October 20, 2016. The new process emphasises on transparency, merit, and diversity. The appointment was made with immediate effect as Justice Shergill replaces Justice EA Arnold-Bailey, who retired on May 31, 2017.
A human rights advocate, Justice Shergill represented the interests of the Canadian Sikh community in several cases heard by the Supreme Court of Canada, including the one dealing with the right of Sikh students to wear the kir- pan (ceremonial dagger) in schools. Welcoming the decision, World Sikh Organisation president Mukhbir Singh said, “The appointment of Justice Shergill is another milestone for the Sikh community in Canada. It is a mat- ter of great pride that today we have the first turbaned Sikh appointed to the ju- diciary in Canada.”
She was born at Rurka Kalan in Jalandhar district and married into a family from Jagatpur village in neighbouring Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar (Nawanshahr). She immigrated to Canada with her family at the age of four. She grew up in Williams Lake, BC, and received her law degree from the University of Saskatchewan. A news release by the Department of Justice, Canada, said that prior to her appointment to the bench, Justice Palbinder Kaur Shergill practised as a lawyer and mediator with her law firm, Shergill & Company, Trial Lawyers. She lives in Surrey with her husband, daughter, and twin sons. Justice Shergill was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2012 and is a recipient of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal for Community Service.
Source : Punjab Advance