Global law firm Clyde & Co has donated CAD 10,000 to help Pro Bono Ontario (PBO) meet its short term obligations in the hopes that longer term funding can be secured.
This week PBO announced that its court-based programs will shut down due to a lack of funding.
PBO is a registered charity dedicated to improving access to the civil justice system in Ontario for low-income Ontarians. The court-based programs provide litigants with access to lawyers for free, including on the spot advice and representation in some civil courts.
Karen P. Earl, managing partner of Clyde & Co’s Toronto office, comments: “Each clinic is staffed by lawyers who volunteer their time. Indeed, many of our lawyers volunteer regularly. Our lawyers have experienced first-hand the benefits that these programs bring to people who would not otherwise have access to a lawyer. Many firms provide financial support to PBO in addition to volunteering services. We hope our contribution will help PBO weather this crisis to allow time for a long term solution.”
Kyle Magee, a senior associate at Clyde & Co who has volunteered regularly since 2009, adds: "Law firms in Ontario have donated thousands of hours of services to these clinics. It would be a tragedy to see the programs collapse.” He points to a recent independent Return on Investment Study that shows the legal assistance being provided by PBO is generating impressive savings for the Ontario government and users of the legal system. Plus, the clinics are a win-win, “Not only are lawyers able to meaningfully contribute to their communities, these programs are an invaluable opportunity for junior civil litigators to gain in-court and client counselling experience.”
“PBO’s ability to increase access to justice is solely the result of lawyers and firms who so generously step up to the plate. We are so grateful for Clyde & Co Canada LLP for its generous gift of $10,000, which will help us continue to fight for low-income Ontarians who have nowhere else to turn,” says Ms. Lynn Burns, Executive Director of Pro Bono Ontario.
Clyde & Co’s Canadian offices in Toronto and Montreal are a key part of Clyde & Co’s global practice, providing a strong regional focus for both local and international clients across a range of complex and contentious matters, including insurance defence and coverage, property and casualty, professional liability, D&O liability, construction and infrastructure, cyber risk, class action defence, product liability, white-collar crime and insurance regulatory advice.