Access to Justice and Legal Education

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Long title: 
Access to Justice, Professional Consciousness and Legal Education
Author(s): 
Farrow, Trevor C. W.
Author(s)' contact information: 
Osgoode Law School, Canada
Conference title: 
International Legal Ethics Conference VI
Conference location: 
City University London
Country: 
Canada
Year: 
2014

The access to justice policy landscape has recently changed – in a dramatic way – in Canada. Two 2013 access to justice policy reports – from the Action Committee on Access to Justice in Civil and Family Matters and the Canadian Bar Association - exemplify this new policy-based landscape. Specific aspects of this changed landscape include a newly formed national collaborative approach to access to justice policy reform, as well as an increased attentiveness to public legal use and legal consciousness as shifting paradigms for new approaches to the delivery of legal services. Legal services are being challenged to address these shifting paradigms. Legal education, and its role in the development of a more meaningful access to justice professional consciousness, is being identified as an important part of how these challenges may be met.
This paper will: (1) discuss this new access to justice terrain; (2) explore the parameters of a new access to justice professional consciousness – designed to reflect the importance of a newly developing public legal consciousness; and (3) examine the role for legal education in the context of these shifting roles and challenges.
It is hoped that this paper will be of interest to policy makers, practitioners, educators and researchers.

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