Justice summit to audit broken system
Public asked to join lawyers and judges in Ontario
Bar Association talks
2007 04:30 AM
The broken justice system is going
under the microscope this summer, when not just
lawyers and judges but members of the public will
come together for the first "justice stakeholders
summit," the Ontario Bar Association is announcing
For the past nine months, the OBA
has been holding town hall meetings across Ontario,
canvassing opinions on issues facing the system.
And there are many, says James
Morton, president of the association that represents
"The system seems to have gone off
the rails and isn't serving the people of Ontario
the way it should," he said yesterday.
Some of the problems raised at the
meetings include lengthy delays in bringing family
and civil matters to court and too many Charter
challenges bogging down criminal courts.
Canada's Chief Justice, Beverley
McLachlin, said in a speech last week that the high
cost of litigation is making justice inaccessible
for an alarming number of Canadians. "A person
injured by the wrongful act of another may decide
not to pursue compensation," McLachlin told the
Empire Club in Toronto.
Some judges – including Justice
Michael Moldaver – have pointed the finger at
lawyers, which is why this summit is about hearing
what others have to say, Morton said.
"Lawyers' solutions don't seem to
Morton promised this wouldn't be
just another "talkfest," but described it as an
ambitious event that will produce a report that will
make comprehensive proposals for change.
"Getting it Right," will take place
in Toronto, June 24 to 26.
Representatives from a variety of
groups, including victims' rights, poverty activists
and the aboriginal community, will work alongside
invitees from all levels of government during three
days of workshops.