Ontario Moves Forward On Legal Aid Transformation
McGuinty Government Asks Justice Sidney Linden To Assist Advisory Groups
Five legal aid advisory groups will have the benefit of Justice Sidney Linden's expertise as they work together to improve the legal aid system.
John McCamus, Board Chair of Legal Aid Ontario, will lead each of the five working groups. Each group will focus on one of the following areas: poverty law, family law, immigration and refugee issues, standard criminal cases and big criminal case management. They will be looking at how the recent $150 million investment by the government can best support the most vulnerable Ontarians and help drive significant reforms in our courts.
The groups will include representatives from Legal Aid Ontario, Ontario Bar Association, Criminal Lawyers' Association, Law Society of Upper Canada, Family Law Association, Refugee Lawyers Association, the County and District Law Presidents' Association, the Advocates' Society and the Ontario Association of Family Mediators.
- On September 8, 2009, the McGuinty government announced an additional $150 million investment over four years in Legal Aid Ontario. This is the province's largest investment in Legal Aid Ontario since its inception.
- Working with the Alliance for Sustainable Legal Aid, it was determined that Justice Linden was an ideal candidate to assist with the project.
- Justice Linden was appointed through an Order in Council, effective September 30, 2009
- Justice Linden has extensive experience as a lawyer, arbitrator, administrator and judge. He was Commissioner of the Ipperwash Inquiry and is Ontario's Conflict of Interest Commissioner.
“I would like to thank Justice Linden for agreeing to take on this important role. His wealth of knowledge and experience in all areas of the justice system uniquely qualify him to work with members of the justice community to help drive the changes that are needed.”
“Justice Linden is an excellent choice to advise us on this important transformation plan. I look forward to working closely with him to enhance the delivery of legal aid services in Ontario.”
“I am grateful for the opportunity to assist with this important project. Working together, I am confident we can ensure that the investment is used to effect positive, meaningful change to assist Ontario's most vulnerable.”
The Honourable Sidney B. Linden