Access to Justice All Stars

Georgette Makhoul: Our Latest A2J All-Star!

Georgette Makhoul, an associate at Hogarth Hermiston Severs LLP, is our latest Access to Justice All-Star, in recognition of her unwavering commitment to Access to Justice education and advocacy. This fall, Georgette is the instructor for Windsor Law’s for-credit Conflict Coaching for SRLs class. The new course provides experiential learning as students work with local SRLs in family or civil court to assist them as coaches at various stages of their case. One of her students in the class has [...]

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Introducing the NSRLP’s Newest Access to Justice All Star: Denice Barrie

Our newest Access to Justice All-Star is Denice Barrie, the President and Founder of Waymark Law, located in Nanaimo, British Columbia. Access to Justice is the focus of Denice’s legal practice, and she is a strong advocate for self-represented litigants. Waymark Law offers legal coaching, unbundled legal services, and research services for litigants who cannot afford full representation. Denice was nominated by Sarah Khan, Coordinator, Intake and Referral Services, for the Legal Services Society in British Columbia. Sarah nominated Denice [...]

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New A2J All-Star: Anne Fletcher!

Our newest Access to Justice All-Star is Anne Fletcher of the Bella Coola Legal Advocacy Program in British Columbia. Anne is an Advocate, funded by the Law Foundation of BC, and a Community Partner of the Legal Services Society (LSS). She helps hundreds of people a year access justice in the BC communities of Bella Coola, Bella Bella, and Klemtu, which have a high proportion of Indigenous clients. These are remote and isolated parts of the province where resources to help [...]

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Newest A2J All-Stars!

Sarah Dover Pictured above left to right:  Brant County Crown Attorney Robert Kindon, Justice Kevin Sherwood, Six Nations community elder Jan Longboat and Justice Gethin Edward, holding a wampum belt, symbolizing the desire to care for all who enter the Brantford Indigenous Persons Court.  NSRLP’s December A2J All-Stars are Sarah Dover, Justice Gethin Edward, and Justice Kevin Sherwood. The trio is nominated by Rosemary Rich, a legal writer and researcher, for their innovative and important work in creating the Indigenous Persons Court [...]

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Introducing A2J All-Star, Jennifer Lin

Our newest Access to Justice All-Star is Jennifer Lin, an Associate with Boughton Law and a volunteer with the Amici Curiae Pro Bono Paralegal Program in Vancouver, B.C. The Amici Curiae program, an organization of paralegals who offer pro bono assistance to self-represented litigants, expanded its services last year to serve temporary foreign workers who need help in preparing their uncontested divorce applications. Nominating Jennifer as an A2J All-Star, Dom Bautista, Executive Director of the Law Courts Centre and of the [...]

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Shannon Salter Joins A2J All-Stars!

Our newest Access to Justice All-Star is Shannon Salter, Chair of the British Columbia Civil Resolution Tribunal. The Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) is a brand-new dispute resolution process that will allow users to resolve their legal problems online, and without legal representation. The CRT is launching with strata (condo) disputes, but will soon extend into small claims court. Nominating Shannon as an A2J All-Star, Professor Noel Semple, NSRLP Advisory Board member and a leading A2J scholar himself, writes: “The CRT is a [...]

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Access to Justice All-Stars: The Team at Calgary LInC

Our newest Access to Justice All-Stars award goes to a very special trio at the Law Information Centre at the Calgary Courts Centre. Cynthia Sawyer, Lisa Paul, and Melissa Molyneux were nominated by a member of the public who has had many encounters with the Law Information Centre, and has been greatly helped by the LInC team. Cynthia, Lisa, and Melissa are Law Information Centre Coordinators. They provide legal information to court clients looking for help. They work constantly with self-represented [...]

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Access to Justice All-Stars – Halton Legal Health Check-Up Program Community Partners

Our newest Access to Justice All-Stars are the 7 community partners in the Halton Legal Health Check-Up program (the Anglican Church of the Incarnation, Halton Multicultural Council, Employment Halton, Links2 Care, Voices for Change Halton, Halton Hills Family Health Team and St. Vincent de Paul at the Mary Mother of God Parish in Oakville). The Halton Legal Health Check-Up is a remarkable example of the effectiveness of community organizations working together on an access to justice problem. In the words [...]

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Our Newest Access to Justice All-Star is Glen Gardner, Assistant Deputy Minister (Innovations) Ministry of Justice, Saskatchewan

“Over the course of his career, Glen has brought a spirit of innovation to his public policy work.  Through his various roles in the Justice Ministry’s Dispute Resolution Office, and now as ADM of the Innovation Branch, Glen has been tirelessly optimistic about the capacity to improve peoples’ experiences with the justice system.  He has encouraged lawyers, judges, other justice professionals and government administrators to tackle this vital question:  how do we facilitate earlier, accessible, client-focused solutions to “legal [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Victoria Foster

The by-line on Victoria Foster’s website (http://www.fosterlegalservices.ca/) reads “Helping self-represented litigants help themselves”. Victoria is a lawyer in Red Deer, Alberta, who just six months after her call to the Bar three years ago set up her own practice with the goal of addressing what she saw as the “huge need” among family litigants for legal assistance. “I wanted to build a practice that could help people who cannot afford a $2,500 retainer.” Victoria offers unbundled legal services – including document review [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Dom Bautista

Our first Access to Justice All-Star of 2015 is Dom Bautista, who for the past 23 years has been the Executive Director at the Law Courts Center in Vancouver, British Columbia. The Law Courts Center provides continuing professional development seminars and lectures for the legal profession in British Columbia. Dom is also the Executive Director of the Amici Curiae Pro Bono Paralegal Program. Amici Curiae, which means friends of the court, is a group of paralegals who offer pro bono [...]

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Access To Justice All-Star: Katrina Trask

Our newest Access to Justice All-Star is nominated by Chief Justice Derek Green of the Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court. Katrina is a Research Lawyer with the Court, where she provides research support to the judges of the Court of Appeal. Katrina attended a workshop for members of the Newfoundland judiciary conducted by NSRLP in June 2014, and at the end of the day introduced herself to Julie. “If you have research that I can help with, I am [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Darrel Pink

In Nova Scotia, Darrel Pink has been called the “eharmony” of access to justice because of his unique and important skills in collaboration and bringing together the right people to have the right conversations to be able to move forward access to justice projects and initiatives. Darrel is a visionary leader and a catalyst for change. He has initiated and hosted a forum on innovative legal services delivery and a workshop on working with self represented litigants, and developed [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Justice David Price

Mr Justice David Price is a judge in the Brampton Superior Court. Before his appointment to the Bench, he was the President of the Etobicoke Conflict Mediation Team for Community Mediation and Restorative Justice. Justice Price has famously advised parents litigating in his court to read books on conflict resolution (for example, “Difficult Conversations” by Bruce Patton), in the hopes that they translate these into more effective strategies to help them resolve their communication and relationship conflicts. Justice Price attended [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Lisa Nakamura

Lisa Nakamura is a Senior Policy Analyst with the British Columbia Ministry of Justice, based in the innovative Dispute Resolution Office. Over the past 12 months, Lisa has been one of the most frequent users and enthusiastic supporters of the NSRLP SRL Speakers Bank, regularly asking for suggestions for SRLs to serve on committees and policy groups developing resources for SRLs. Lisa turns the stereotype of a mechanistic, cautious bureaucrat on its head. She is open and candid about [...]

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Access to Justice All-Stars: The “Angels” of the Registry Counter in Prince George, BC

“…(T)he most helpful people were the counter clerks – they were my angels.” – SRL from Prince George, British Columbia (National Self-Represented Litigants Study, 2013) With the help of their manager Rayna Kelner, we have tracked down the “angels” to whom this SRL was referring: the registry counter staff in the courthouse in Prince George, BC. They are Trudy, Sandy, Heather, Glenda, Maddison, Devyn, Margherita & Sandra. Prince George does not have a staffed resource center for assisting SRLs, but has [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Peter Halls

“Peter’s friendly and professional manner made it less stressful for me to ask for assistance. He listened quietly to my questions and gave me his full attention, which made me feel that my concerns mattered. I no longer felt like a faceless number. Peter provided me with the proper information I required, in a timely manner, to effectively and efficiently complete the necessary steps required by the courts.” Peter Halls is the first person one speaks to when entering the [...]

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Access to Justice All-Stars: Jim Andrews and Richard Rondeau

Our third nominees to the Access to Justice All-Stars team are Jim Andrews and Richard Rondeau of the BC Supreme Court Self Help and Information Services, part of the Vancouver Justice Access Centre (JAC). Jim and Richard bring a combined 70 years experience in court administration and services to their work with self-represented litigants. Much of their day-to-day work involves helping clients locate key legal information on the Internet and research case law, breaking down complex court processes and [...]

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Access to Justice All-Stars: Family Duty Counsel Team (Windsor, ON)

Our next nominees for the Access to Justice All-Stars team are the members of the Family Duty Counsel team at the Windsor, Ontario courthouse. Comprising Kaitlyn McCabe, Jim Oxley, Stephanie Johnson and Annette Stoehr, and supported by Legal Aid Workers Lucille McDonald (pictured) and Vicky Vere, this team drew many positive compliments from Windsor family SRLs participating in the National SRL Study (2013). This included recognition of how hard the team worked to assist the sometimes overwhelming number of [...]

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Access to Justice All-Star: Heather Hui-Litwin

Heather Hui-Litwin volunteers as a duty counsel with Law Help Ontario, offering assistance to civil litigants in the Toronto courts. Heather’s personal experience as a self-represented litigant in a civil lawsuit means that she has a unique understanding of and empathy for the needs of SRLs. In the last six months as well as volunteering with PBLO  assisting SRLs, Heather has acted a legal coach  (on a pro bono limited scope retainer) in a unique legal coaching experiment piloted by NSRLP. [...]

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