Lawyers come in all shapes and sizes, and any criminal lawyer in Brampton or anywhere across the world look to find a group that can help them find clients, make sure they’re up to par with regulations and standards, as well as to find others like them.
Asian Canadian lawyers have been paying attention to the New Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers Ontario for this reason, which has been gaining attention recently thanks to their growing momentum, which included an appearance in the Supreme Court, a visit from the Chief Justice, and even acknowledgement from parliament.
FACL President Gerald Chan says that they’ve been working hard to build momentum, and he’s honored to take on a leadership position during this time, pointing to the moment when the Secretary of the Minister of Justice asking about their position regarding an issue being tackled by the Criminal Lawyers’ Association.
One of the key issues the FACL is looking to deal with is the immediate challenge of advocacy, which Chan says it hopes to deal with using the legal skills of the organizations’ members, working to achieve greater equity, diversity and inclusion in the law community. Notably, the Law Society of Ontario has been mandating that lawyers sign a statement saying that they’ll be promoting diversity and inclusion principles. FACL Ontario has thrown its support with the requirement, but more than a few members of the LSO’s board of benchers are casting doubt on the matter.
Chan notes that it’s interesting time for equity, diversity and inclusion for the lawyer community, and even a criminal lawyer in Brampton would say that it is also a difficult time, given how the recent bencher elections and all of the debates regarding the statement of principles.
Chan notes that the FACL’s advocacy has taken different forms in the past, with engaging with law society and Convocation among the means they’ve used. Now, more than ever, Chan says that it’s key, but he also notes that their advocacy is more than that, and he believes that it shouldn’t be restricted to that.
Chan admits that he recognizes that the opposition has used to fight back against the SOP, but he says that the FACL disagrees. He notes how all lawyers swear to uphold the oath to promote justice is something no one really argues, or debates about. In his eyes, promoting equity, diversity, and inclusion aren’t any different.