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Letter: LSUC responds to discrimination allegation

I am writing in response to the article “Lawyer alleges discrimination by LSUC security guard,” published in the July 25, 2016 issue.

The Law Society has standard procedures for all non-staff licensees who seek to enter controlled access areas of the building. Access to these parts of the building is gained through the main reception area of the Law Society. The standard procedures call for security staff to ask licensees to show their Law Society identification card. If this card is expired, security staff will check the Law Society’s database of licensees to confirm the licensee’s status. Once security staff have confirmed the licensee’s status, he or she is permitted entry to those areas of the building.

It is true that some individuals are not stopped at the main entrance. Staff of the Law Society are not subject to the standard procedures outlined above and move frequently through the controlled access doors without interacting with security. Staff of the Law Society are issued staff identification cards and security passes, which they use to gain entry to controlled access areas of the building directly.

Following the occasion of his visit to the Law Society, Mr. Pieters contacted me to express how he experienced the interaction with security staff as one of singling him out and discrimination.

The Law Society took Mr. Pieters’ concerns very seriously. Mr. Pieters’ interaction with the security staff on July 5 and his concerns of discrimination were reviewed in detail. I met with Mr. Pieters to discuss his concerns and the outcome of the review. 

We very much regret that Mr. Pieters was upset by his experience with the Law Society on July 5.
However, I am satisfied that standard procedures were followed and there was no discrimination.

Equity and diversity are a priority for the Law Society. Providing respectful and positive service to the public and all licensees who visit Osgoode Hall is also a priority. All staff at the Law Society participate in anti-harassment and anti-discrimination training. Staff at the Law Society are also mindful of the face they present to the public and all licensees.

Robert Lapper
Chief Executive Officer
Law Society of Upper Canada

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