Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) has appointed Associate Dean (Academic) Beverly Jacobs to lead a review of its structure to respond to the legal needs of Indigenous people in Ontario.
The appointment is part of a commitment LAO has made to working with Indigenous communities and all levels of government to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s 94 Calls to Action—particularly those addressed to the justice community.
Dr. Jacobs has begun her review of LAO’s internal organizational structure and will present her recommendations before year-end. LAO will make Dr. Jacobs’ findings and recommendations public.
“Legal Aid Ontario is committed to implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, which include the commitment to eliminate the overrepresentation of Indigenous adults and youth in the criminal justice and correctional systems," says Legal Aid Ontario Chair Charles Harnick. "Dr. Jacobs is highly regarded for her expertise regarding Indigenous Peoples in the legal system. We are pleased that she is working on this important review that we hope will improve legal services to Indigenous Peoples and increase their access to justice in Ontario. Reconciliation can only happen through reflection, action, and partnership with First Nation, Métis and Inuit communities. LAO will continue to work in this manner, embracing the spirit of the TRC.”
"I am honoured to be appointed to do this work with Legal Aid Ontario," adds Dr. Jacobs. "I believe in transformational change and that LAO is committed and willing to do what is right for Indigenous peoples in Ontario.”
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