Focus On

Access to Justice


Tuesday, March 17, 2020 @ 9:17 AM

‘Limited practitioners’ needed for access to justice in Manitoba, says official Kris_Dangerfield_sm

With the ever-increasing costs of legal services placing the hiring of lawyers beyond reach for more and more people, Manitoba’s law society is welcoming proposed legislation that would allow for “limited practitioners” in that province. On March 9, Justice Minister Cliff Cullen announced proposed amendments to the province’s Legal Professions Act which, if passed, will pave the way for the Law Society of Manitoba (LSM) to designate a category of non-lawyers and allow them to provide a limited scope of legal services. ... [read more]

Monday, March 16, 2020 @ 4:19 PM

Ontario Superior Court suspends all operations including criminal cases

To protect the health and safety of all court users and to help contain the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the Superior Court of Justice announced that it is suspending all regular operations, effective March 17 and until further notice. ... [read more]

Monday, March 16, 2020 @ 12:33 PM

In dogged pursuit of Punky’s Law Punky_sm.jpg

Who knew municipal law making happens at 10 p.m. on a Wednesday? Not me. I had put myself on the speaker’s list at city hall in Vancouver in reponse to a motion I read about concerning dangerous dogs that I believed needed a serious revision before it could help dogs and not inadvertently cause an access to justice for animals problem for dogs and their humans trying to access a second chance and to avail themselves of rehabilitation. ... [read more]

Monday, March 16, 2020 @ 9:10 AM

Nova Scotia’s immunity to gambling class actions could face challenge: lawyer Raymond_Wagner_sm

There could be legal challenges to newly passed Nova Scotia legislation shielding the government from class actions by those claiming to have suffered harm from problem gambling, a lawyer says. ... [read more]

Friday, March 13, 2020 @ 11:08 AM

What our courts can and should do to address COVID-19 concerns | Kyla Lee

From what I have heard from court staff, sheriffs and other lawyers, our courts are inadequately prepared to address the COVID-19 outbreak. In British Columbia, there are currently no enhanced sanitation procedures in place. ... [read more]

Friday, March 13, 2020 @ 10:59 AM - Last Updated: Friday, March 13, 2020 @ 5:09 PM

Jury trials nixed over COVID-19; SCC closed to public; courts offer remote hearings, adjournments Vivene Salmon

As concerns mount over the health risks from COVID-19, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice has suspended upcoming jury trials, while both the Supreme Court of Canada and the Ontario Court of Appeal say they will hear scheduled appeals for the time being, but are advising parties to contact the courts should they wish to appear by video or teleconference, or ask for an adjournment of their cases. ... [read more]

Friday, March 13, 2020 @ 9:14 AM

Observers express optimism, support for B.C. First Nations justice strategy CBABC president Ken Armstrong

British Columbia has revealed a strategy for its justice system aimed at reducing the number of Indigenous people who find themselves before criminal courts and ensuring First Nations are more involved in the legal services that affect them. ... [read more]

Thursday, March 12, 2020 @ 1:52 PM

SCC missed chance to review ‘new approach’ by Federal Court of Appeal in pipeline case: lawyer Chris Tollefson

Chris Tollefson hoped the Supreme Court of Canada would have heard an appeal from his client, the Federation of British Columbia Naturalists (BC Nature), which was denied leave last September by the Federal Court of Appeal in its challenge of the federal cabinet’s approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project. ... [read more]

Thursday, March 12, 2020 @ 9:33 AM

New defamation law needed to regulate ‘harmful Internet speech,’ LCO reports Nye_Thomas_sm

After four years of research and international consultations, the Law Commission of Ontario (LCO) has released its “Defamation Law in the Internet Age” report, which proposes 39 recommendations for reforming Ontario’s defamation law to address online attacks on reputation. ... [read more]

Wednesday, March 11, 2020 @ 1:10 PM

B.C. provides funding for Prince George legal clinic

The government of British Columbia announced that it has awarded a $250,000 grant to Active Support Against Poverty (ASAP) that will allow the organization to host a legal clinic. ... [read more]