Upcoming Events, New Links & Interesting Commentary
July 17, 2018 - Update on the Alford constitutional challenge: Canadian Lawyer. Proceedings should have been brought in Divisional Court, not S.C.J. The full decision may be found here.
Similar E.D.I. initiatives are taking root in Nova Scotia: Canadian Lawyer
Jonathan Kay's speech to the Law Society of BC on the importance of the Rule of Law, printed in Quillette Magazine.
Another thought-provoking article in Quillette Magazine by undergraduate student Coleman Hughes, who writes: "The disparity fallacy and the denial of cultural factors conspire to create a dynamic that I call the Racism Treadmill: as long as cultural differences continue to cause disparities between racial groups, and as long as progressives imagine that systemic racism lies behind every disparity, then no amount of progress in reducing systemic racism, however large or concrete, will ever look like progress to progressives." (Emphasis added)
Trying to understand the rise of "diversity, inclusion and equity" policies and their connection to law schools? Quillette Magazine has an excellent backgrounder: Beyond All Warnings: The Radical Assault on Truth in the Law
New article in the Ottawa Citizen by Marty Gobin: "The Law Society's diversity policy doesn't include diverse views"
Last minute Annual Report filing? Need inspiration for your reason for saying "no" to the Statement of Principles requirement? Read what some of your colleagues have stated on their ARs on our Letters page.
New article in The Advocate Daily: LSO's statement of principles more talk than action
As the Law Society rolls out EDI initiatives such as "unconscious bias training" (offered this month by the CBA as well), it is important to understand the limitations, and even negative consequences, of such testing. Jared Brown explores the issue in depth in his blog.
*Must read: New scholarly article by Professor Art Cockfield, published in Queen’s Law Research Paper Series, "Limiting Lawyer Liberty: How the Statement of Principles Coerces Speech"
A new article by lawyer and writer Karen Selick (found here) encourages lawyers to refuse to answer the demographic questions on the Annual Report, which will eventually be used by the Law Society to monitor the composition of law firms.
This interview between Dr. Jordan Peterson and Claire Lehman, editor of Quillette magazine, includes an interesting discussion on the Statement of Principles, beginning at about minute 49. It was recorded last November, but only recently released. Well worth a listen!
New article by Albertos Polizogopoulos on why he refuses to sign on to the Law Society’s Statement of Principles: The Law Society of Orwell
Constitutional Law instructor, Leonid Sirota, has shared his Annual Report submission on the Statement of Principles:
Ottawa Lawyers: Upcoming debate on the Statement of Principles between lawyer Sadie Etemad and bencher Susan Richer, Wed. Feb. 28. See link for details.
Pre-eminent lawyer, former Bencher, and recipient of the LSUC's highest honour - The Law Society Medal, Earl Cherniak Q.C. shares the comment he has submitted on his Annual Report along with his "NO" to the Statement of Principles:
“I, and my firm, abide by and indeed exceed the requirements of the laws of Ontario and Canada, and the Rules of Professional Conduct of the LSUC with respect to diversity, equality and inclusion. My personal views and practice on these issues are my own, based on my upbringing and my personal moral code, and they are obvious to anyone who knows or works with me. They are only incidentally related to the fact that I am a lawyer. I reject the idea that the LSUC, or anyone can require me to sign or affirm a statement of my principles, much less a 'Statement of Principles.'”
Have you written a letter to the Law Society to voice your opposition? Would you like to share it with your colleagues?
See our newest page and discover the concerns other lawyers are expressing, including those of the Hon. Doug Lewis Q.C.
We now have a page for your written contributions. Our latest submission is the transcript of Prof. Bruce Pardy’s remarks at the recent CIJA conference.
The world is watching us: Cato Institute: Ontario Bar Requires Lawyer Pledge to "Promote Equality"
Press Release from the Canadian Constitution Foundation, dated February 5, 2018, regarding the Statement of Principles Charter challenge
D. Jared Brown will be joining Professor Bruce Pardy and the Treasurer of the Law Society Paul Schabas in a panel discussion on the Law Society’s Statement of Principles on February 13th.
8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Tickets - $100
at Law Society of Upper Ontario, Osgoode Hall 130 Queen St. West
For more information: Cindy Osheroff at 416.638.1991 ext. 5126 or firstname.lastname@example.org
This program contains 1 hour and 15 minutes of Equality and Inclusion Professionalism Hours.