Here’s an article (see below) I re-blogged from the National Self-represented Litigants Project (NSRLP) on why we need reforms to create better access to justice.
Equality before the law is what our society is based upon. We have more lawyers today than most other countries. Yet the middle class has been priced out of the market for legal assistance. No one wants to self-represent. If we could all afford the best lawyers out there, we’d hire them, since it would significantly increase our chances of winning. The hourly-billing model has placed justice out of reach for most people except large coporations and the very wealthy. Our ministers of justice have to lead change by fixing imbalances such as those at the License Appeal Tribunal for ONHWPA claims. They are fully aware of the problems and need to take real action.
When the NSRLP Advisory Board met in Windsor two weeks ago, we looked back at our 2015 Strategic Plan (which you can read here) and talked about progress made towards our overarching goal – to raise public and justice system professionals’ awareness of the SRL phenomenon, and its impact on Access to Justice for Canadians.
The NSRLP mandate
Board member and former SRL Jennifer Muller summed up the NSRLP mandate as follows:
“At the heart of our mandate is the intention to challenge the negative stereotype of SRLs. Each project and every interaction that the NSRLP had with anyone this year furthered this important goal of changing how others see and understand SRLs.”
Jennifer pointed out that this meant “building this understanding from the bottom up, beginning with law students.” Law student representative Erin Chesney added:
“We need to focus on law students because they are the future lawyers…
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