October 27 is Duty Counsel Day across Canada.
Initiated by Canada’s legal aid associations, this is a day to create awareness of duty counsel—legal aid lawyers who give free, on-the-spot legal advice in family, criminal and immigration cases for people living in Canada.
At the courthouse or over the phone, duty counsel are there to help people navigate the justice system.
In British Columbia, there are 450 lawyers who provide duty counsel services. Last year, duty counsel assisted people more than 81,000 times.
In a video message, Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson thanked these “legal superheroes” for the difference they make in people’s lives across the country.
This year, Legal Aid BC is working with Canada’s legal aid associations to inspire the next generation to learn about their legal rights and discover career opportunities in law. Teachers are encouraged to share short videos, learning materials, and discuss how the Canadian justice system works with their students.
You can learn more about duty counsel and download free educational resources at knowdutycounsel.ca.