Legal clinics in Ontario totally differ from all other clinics around the globe.
In Canada there are 2 different types of legal clinics:
student legal clinics, which operate at law faculties or schools, and also community legal clinics, which are funded from local budgets and which involve professional lawyers.
Student legal clinics resemble Ukrainian examples of legal clinics.
But what is new? That is the phenomenon of community legal clinics! That’s why the experience of our colleagues is extremely important for us.
They concentrate their activity on 3 most important spheres:
providing legal consultations, performing legal educational events and carrying out legal research of the most problematic questions in the society with the aim of reforming the system.
The interesting thing here is newly developed course of lectures for people, who work in the services sector with a lot of customers. These events are performed for providing to ordinary people the possibility to recognize the legal problem so they can guide clients to the local legal clinic.
What foreign experience do we have to take into account?
The most important sphere of activity is carrying out legal researches by our Canadian colleagues.
For exploring the problem of poverty and of access to justice Canadian lawyers created public discussion groups.
They gathered people from different age, sex and income categories with the aim of obtaining the fullest image of real situation in the society.
This gave possibility to investigate the problem from the inside and to form effective offers for the government about reforming current system.
Last years in Canada formed the tradition of entering the government by lawyers, members of legal clinics, and others public figures, because they are the ones who can solve current problems by the most nonstandard means.
We can definitely say that the meeting was extremely productive and useful. Not only Ukrainian lawyers get new knoledge, but our Canadian colleagues also found out a lot about new educational methods and Ukrainian experience in implementing programm street law.