Over the last several months, Legal Aid Ontario has been talking to people in the community about issues related to its Racialized Communities Strategy. Through it all, we have heard one concern raised again and again by community members, community agencies and staff at community legal clinics: more needs to be done to support children in conflict with the education system.
As we celebrate National Aboriginal Day, LAO remains committed to the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. We are proud to repost this piece about the TRC and the work that was still ahead when it was written in 2015, and that still remains ahead even today.
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.
What the numbers tell is: 1 in 5 racialized families live in poverty in Canada, compared to 1 in 20 non-racialized families…
Courts are overwhelmed by the number of people in custody. Often, bail is only granted when excessive conditions are met. This delays hearings unnecessarily. And, often, the conditions have nothing to do with ensuring someone’s appearance in court or protecting the public.
The longer someone spends in custody waiting for a bail hearing or trial, the more likely it is they will plead guilty just to get out of jail – even if they’re innocent.
Kimberly Roach, one of our leads for the Racialized Communities Strategy (RCS), attended the One Vision One Voice symposium on changing the child welfare system for African Canadians.
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.
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) detains refugees and immigrants, including children, in violation of their human rights. This is the first in a multi-part blog on why—and on what LAO and other concerned citizens are doing about it.
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 […]
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.