CBABC president also met with local lawyers to discuss proposed changes to rules governing lawyers
The Canadian Bar Association's BC Branch recently donated electronics to several local non-profit organizations as part of its ongoing efforts to improve access to justice in the province.
Led by President Clare Jennings, the CBABC delivered laptops to Upper Skeena Counselling & Legal Assistance Society (USCLAS) in Hazelton. Founded in 1977, USCLAS is a non-profit organization that provides essential legal services to the community in criminal, family, and poverty law.
According to CBABC, the laptops were collected through its “Access to Justice (A2J) Tech Drive,” which received over 180 electronic devices from law firms and individual lawyers.
“The A2J Tech Drive was premised upon helping rural communities, like Hazelton, connect with the justice system that has increasingly become digital,” Jennings said. “I’m thankful for the donors’ efforts in helping the campaign’s vision turn into reality.”
USCLAS managing lawyer Linda Locke expressed her gratitude to the CBABC, noting that donations of technological tools would help clients access courts and other resources as their organization’s impact in the northwest BC communities “continues to grow.”
Besides USCLAS, other organizations across northern BC, including the Island Wellness Society (IWS) in Skidegate and the Haida Gwaii Society for Community Peace, also received electronic devices from the CBABC.
IWS is a community-based agency that provides counselling programs to children and youth impacted by abuse and trauma within their homes, schools, and communities. Haida Gwaii Society for Community Peace is a not-for-profit association that provides temporary, secure housing and advocacy for survivors of family or gender-based violence.
The CBABC confirmed that Jennings also headed to Smithers and Terrace to meet with local lawyers to discuss proposed changes to rules regulating lawyers.
“The lawyers in these communities must be heard,” Clare said. “They are BC North’s greatest allies in increasing access to justice for British Columbians in this area,” Jennings said. “The work they do is immense, [and] I could not miss the opportunity to hear from them before I step down from my role as president.”