You hear it anecdotally; at least I do: the stories of dedicated lawyers burnt out by unpaid bills and unstable incomes, and struggling with building their own practice with a life outside of work. More often than not, these are stories told to me by women.
In 2007, Ashley Smith died in federal custody in Kitchener, Ont., after spending extended periods of time in segregation (or solitary confinement). In 2010, Edward Snowshoe died by suicide while in custody in Edmonton, Alta., after spending 162 days in segregation. These cases have become emblematic of the incredible problems with the continued use of segregation in prisons.
Last December’s report from the Ontario Legislature’s Select Committee on Sexual Violence and Workplace Harassment identified the province as a major hub for human trafficking. Through the testimony of experts and survivors, the committee learned that 90 per cent of sex trafficking victims, predominantly female, are Canadian born. They come from communities across Ontario, from every cultural and socio-economic background. They are the girls next door.
Law Times reports this week that a disbarred lawyer will have a chance at a pardon for his criminal fraud convictions after a Federal Court judge ruled the Parole Board of Canada acted unreasonably in denying him one. Context, in this case, is everything.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau could be headed for a mess of problems because of a Supreme Court decision last year on assisted dying for the medically incurable. Carter v. Canada (Attorney General) came down in February 2015. That’s even before Trudeau came to power.
The Liberals’ talk of electoral reform has led to questions about the process to be followed before any such change is adopted. So far, the Trudeau government has opposed holding a referendum on any new proposal, while the Conservatives have declared one must be held to legitimate such an important change.
On a Wednesday evening in late September, I found myself among a motley crew of Ottawa lawyers. From seasoned big-firm litigators to sole practitioners fresh out of law school, the room at City Hall was packed. We had gathered for a training session on the basics of preparing refugee resettlement applications.
Do you defend traffic cases? Are you planning to challenge a parking ticket? If you or your clients drive in the City of Toronto, you may encounter serious inconvenience.