Various organizations come together to protest legal aid budget cuts
With Ontario’s legal aid system facing a historically large budget cut, a coalition of frontline legal aid and legal clinic workers, lawyers, legal aid users and community allies have organized a series of mobilizations and actions in communities across the province on July 30.
The coalition is composed of members of the Association of Community Legal Clinics of Ontario (ACLCO), the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (CARL), the Family Lawyers Association of Ontario (FLA), Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU), Ontario Association of Child Protection Lawyers (OACPL), the Refugee Lawyers Association of Ontario (RLA), and the Society of United Professionals (SUP) and various local community legal clinics and community partners around the province, a statement from the SUP said.
The “day of action” protests condemn the provincial government’s legal aid system budget cuts — which total nearly $300 million for 2019 and 2020. According to SUP, this will hurt a huge number of Ontarians, including tenants, low-wage workers, women fleeing violence, people struggling with mental illness, workers hurt on the job, and parents with custody or support issues.
Assemblies were held at Bloor Street United Church, the office of MPP Raymond Cho, Gage Park, Kingston City Hall and Renfrew Town Hall, among others. For a complete list of actions, click here.