Inaugural Access to Justice Week in BC

The first provincial Access to Justice (A2J) Week is being led by BC’s three law schools: Allard School of Law (Vancouver), Thompson Rivers University Faculty of Law (Kamloops), and the University of Victoria Faculty of Law (Victoria). The week mirrors similar weeks that have recently taken place in Ontario and Saskatchewan. 
A2J Week is inspired by two goals:
  • to raise awareness and interest among law students to make A2J a meaningful part of their future careers, and
  • to showcase what is already being done to help address A2J problems, including work done by faculty and students.

Check out these events at Allard Hall:

Monday October 1 from 12:30-1:30

Launching A2J Week in the Lew Forum. Come by our table and pick up a A2J button, learn about the A2J crisis in Canada, and see what our clinics and student organizations are doing to increase access to justice in BC.

Tuesday October 2 from 12:30-1:45
What would access to justice look like for victims of sexual violence?  Talk by Professor Julie Macfarlane (Faculty of Law, University of Windsor), co-presented with the Centre for Feminist Legal Studies in Room 122. Please see the poster for more details.
Tuesday October 2 from 2:00-3:30
Self-Represented Litigants Simulation Game in the Franklin Lew Forum, co-presented with Pro Bono Students Canada & Social Justice Action Network student clubs and with assistance from the Law Students’ Legal Advice Program. Join us for an awareness-building game about what it can be like to be a self-represented litigant (SRL) in Canada’s legal system. Using materials developed by the National Self-Represented Litigants Project, the game puts participants in positions often faced by SRLs to break down common stereotypes about SRLs and their experiences.
Wednesday October 3  12:30-1:45
Lawyering with Heart: Violence-informed and solution-focussed lawyering for Indigenous youth and families. Panel with Professor Natalie Clark (Education & Social Work, TRU) & Katrina Harry (Lead Counsel, Parents Legal Advice Centre, Vancouver), co-presented with the Indigenous Legal Studies Program and the Indigenous Law Students Association in Room 123. Please see the poster for more details.
Though not part of A2JWeekBC, please note that the Sisters in Spirit Vigil takes place over lunchtime on Thursday October 4.

Other related events taking place in Vancouver include:

September 29-30
Justice Hack BC 2018 (@JusticeHackBC) – This is a legal hackathon for students to make use of new technologies to improve access to justice in the area of family law.
October 4-5
7th Annual National Pro Bono Conference at SFU’s Wosk Centre for Dialogue, 580 West Hastings Street, Vancouver. The 7th National Pro Bono Conference will bring together lawyers, paralegals, law students, judges, politicians, government representatives, non-profit sector leaders, academics and the public from Canada, the US and abroad to share ideas and best practices for increasing access to justice for all members of society.
A2J Week has support from the Law Society of BC, the Law Foundation of BC, the BC Branch of the Canadian Bar Association, Courthouse Libraries BC, and Access to Justice BC (A2JBC). All of the organizers hope that this week will help draw attention to local and provincial efforts to improve A2J in our communities and anticipate that this will become a yearly event.
A2J Week at the Allard School of Law has been organized by Professor Mary Liston (Director, Law and Social Justice Specialization Program) and Tracy Wachmann (Public Interest Coordinator, Career Services) with assistance and support from the Centre for Feminist Legal Studies at the Allard School of Law, the Indigenous Legal Studies Program at the Allard School of Law, and three amazing student organizations: the Indigenous Legal Students Association, Pro Bono Students Canada, and the Social Justice Action Network.