Access to Justice Blog
Analysis and opinions from the leading voices in access to justice research.
A number of reports published in recent years have highlighted the lack of research on access to justice in Canada and have called for more. In a Canadian Forum on Civil Justice column published on slaw.ca, Andrew Pilliar discusses the state of access to justice research in Canada and offers insight into how much access to justice research is being funded in Canada. Read “The Cost of Justice (Research)” here.
Le forum canadien sur la justice civile est très heureux d’annoncer que << Les problèmes juridiques de la vie quotidienne et le coût de la justice au
Canada : rapport général >> est présentement disponible en français. Ce rapport général fait partie du projet sur les coûts de la justice (2011-2018) qui examine les coûts sociaux et économiques du système de justice canadien.
Les problèmes juridiques de la vie quotidienne et le coût de la justice au Canada : rapport général est disponsible sur notre site web ici.
The Legal Health Check-up Project which involved 12 community legal clinics in Southwestern Ontario and 125 partnerships with community organizations and service agencies, was developed as a way to provide information and assistance related to everyday legal problems to disadvantaged people. "Engaging the Power of Community to Expand Legal Services for Low‐Income Ontarians", the complete report on the Legal Health Check-Up Project was prepared by CFCJ Senior Research Fellow, Dr. Ab Currie, in his capacity as Research Consultant to the Legal Health Check-up Project and details the development, adoption and expansion of the Legal Health Check-Up Project. "Engaging the Power of Community to Expand Legal Services for Low‐Income Ontarians" is available in full here.
In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of individuals who address a legal issue without the assistance of legal representation. Statistical data generated by the Canadian Forum on Civil Justice (CFCJ) indicates that approximately 11.4 million people in Canada will experience at least one everyday legal problem in a given three-year period. It is further reported that approximately “50% of people try to resolve their problems on their own with no or minimal legal or authoritative non-legal assistance.” In statistical terms, another recent report reveals that approximately 40% of civil law litigants represent themselves, and this percentage increases dramatically in certain legal fields, such as family law, where as high as 60-70% of litigants in certain family courts are self-represented. Moreover, as retainers run out, legal matters are unresolved and clients are unable to pay their mounting legal bills, the percentage of self-represented litigants is likely to increase.... Read More
There is a new socially innovative initiative, known as Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), whereby the private sector shares in the risk and reward associated with the outcome of social programs. With funding being a challenge for many not-for-profits and stakeholders working to improve access to justice across Canada, SIBs may provide a way forward for many in this area.
SIBs are a “pay-for-success” contract in which the government contracts with a private actor to create a program. The government is only required to pay if the program meets a threshold target. Often, there will be a range of targets with a corresponding payout depending on the level of success. In 2015, the Ontario government committed to piloting SIBs as part of its poverty reduction strategy.
SIBs were first developed in 2014 in Saskatchewan with a program to support at-risk single mothers. The program, a five-year arrangement, was a collaboration between a credit union and a youth centre... Read More