By Shibil Siddiqi
This post was originally published by Legal Aid Ontario as part of the Personal perspectives on access to justice series.
Access to justice
Traditionally access to justice has been seen as providing access to dispute resolution tools, including effective access to courts and tribunals.
No one should have to lose their liberty, family, residency status, home or source of income without a fair shot at due process.
With dispute resolution effective access is key, and necessarily includes the provision of competent legal services to ensure that parties to a dispute can navigate the technical requirements and barriers established by a formal dispute resolution mechanism such as the justice system.
Legal clinics are looking at how we can improve our services. We believe we can give clients more service, more access to justice and provide it closer to home.
Here are some of our main ideas:
The GTA Legal Clinics’ Transformation Project has released its Vision Report: a report that spells out how geographically based community legal clinics in the GTA can be reorganized to provide more and better services to our client community.
This year NLS is marking its 40th year of providing legal services to the low income residents of Toronto’s downtown east side. Only a few in the community now will recall that day in 1973 when the clinic opened its door in a house on Seaton Street. While the community has changed and continues to change in what is really a process of continual renewal, the basic legal needs the clinic addresses have not changed much. Fighting through the Courts and Tribunals, through law reform campaigns and through outreach and public legal education for better and more secure housing, better and more secure incomes and more secure status in Canada for immigrants and their families has been the mainstay of our work throughout the past 4 decades.
The NLS Blog
Our blog shares information with our community on legal developments and other important issues. As such we hope you'll find this blog informative - and maybe even fun.