Oct. 27, 2021

Access to Justice Week: Public Interest Law Clinic works advocates for law reform in public interest issues

Clinic has seen great success since opening in 2015

Since it opened its doors in 2015, the Public Interest Law Clinic (PILC) at UCalgary has been hard at work facilitating access to justice by serving as pro bono legal counsel for public interest clients and disseminate research findings on public interest issues, and advocating for law reform. From protecting cutthroat trout and other species at risk, fighting against open pit coal mines in environmentally-sensitive areas, and helping Albertans navigate debt negotiations, the PILC is inspiring a new generation of lawyers to advocate on matters such as public health, human rights, poverty, and environmental protection by providing law students with experiential learning opportunities.

The clinic has a vision for a just Canadian society that values and respects all people and the environment in which we live, with a mission to advocate effectively for systemic change that values and advances the well-being of the public and the environment, and works toward this goal through four main objectives:

  • Involving law students directly in public interest issues through legal research, writing and advocacy;
  • Working with other organizations and individuals to advocate for systemic change in public law matters, including issues that affect the disadvantaged and the environment;
  • Advocating for law reform through legislative proposals and impact litigation, and;
  • Strengthening access to justice through pro bono legal research and advocacy.

Interested in supporting the Public Interest Law Clinic? Read more.

Alberta Access to Justice Week

Access to justice can mean many things. It can mean getting the information necessary to know one’s legal rights and responsibilities. It can mean having meaningful access to the courts or another dispute resolution system when faced with a conflict. It can mean being able to retain a lawyer to represent one’s interests. It can mean having a say in the content of the laws that govern us. It can mean all this and more.