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Tracking legal need in very small areas with the Legal Health Check-Up

The legal health check-up (LHC) is a uniquely valuable tool for documenting unmet legal need at a very fine-grained local level. The LHC questionnaire is administered by community groups and service agencies to people seeking their services. Individuals who request service from the legal clinic are referred to the clinic. The LHC form becomes the basis for a dialogue between the clinic staff and the individual, laying the groundwork for a more holistic and integrated service that would otherwise not have occurred with an intake process focussing on only one presenting problem.

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Advocating for more public legal education in racialized communities

By Josephine Li Wayne van der Meide, one of Legal Aid Ontario’s (LAO) co-leads for its Racialized Communities Strategy, experienced an “astonishing” moment when he was meeting with a settlement agency to talk about what LAO does. “It was astonishing when we would say LAO could cover all of these different legal issues and the […]

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Why we organized Ontario’s first Access to Justice Week, Oct. 17-21

We organized this week to create a forum for exploring collaborative initiatives in justice. The events were designed to be engagement and learning opportunities, and they’re open to anyone who wants to participate, whether they be members of the public, legal professionals, community workers, students, or other access to justice advocates.

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Canada will never end racism unless it dispels these three national myths first

The new Anti-Racism Directorate aims to tackle systemic racism at a broad level through policy, research, public awareness and community collaboration. However, the Directorate’s work, and in effect its very existence, will always be resisted and threatened by some unless common underlying myths about racism are first addressed in the public sphere.

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There’s a Huge Problem In Ontario Schools That We Aren’t Talking About

The school laws in Ontario have evolved to follow a much more progressive approach that recognizes a one punishment fit all system is not effective. However, there is not enough oversight in place to ensure all suspensions/expulsions are completely justified; not when the access to justice is nowhere near the standard it should be.

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Tara George: on the front line helping clients at LAO for 22 years and counting

I was 17 when I started with LAO as a co-op student— my high school counsellor told me I could get four credits for a semester.

I’d always known I wanted to do something in the legal field, but I didn’t give it much more thought than that. Then, that May, just before I graduated from high school, I was offered a position at LAO as support staff. I decided to wait a year before college and see what LAO had to offer.