From Law Foundation of Saskatchewan
After four years of granted support from the Law Foundation of Saskatchewan (LFS), the College of Law at the University of Saskatchewan applied for a second 5-year LFS grant. This major strategic initiative is one which LFS was proud to support again by funding the role of its Access to Justice Coordinator, currently held by Brea Lowenberger.
The first four years saw substantial achievements under Lowenberger’s energetic leadership, starting with the creation of an access to justice incubator or research centre which focused on access to legal services, dispute resolution and systemic justice. Since then, the role of the Access to Justice Coordinator has evolved along with the increasing number of projects under the auspices of the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Action Towards Equal Justice, or CREATE Justice for short, which was established in response to both national calls to action and a local recommendation by participants at the 2015 Dean’s Forum on Dispute Resolution and Access to Justice.
This organically evolved alongside what is now known as the SK A2J Network, whose members support, as appropriate, research and writing, coordinate activities, and implement recommendations from the Dean’s Forum and Network members.
All these developments have combined into a synergetic force whose effectiveness Lowenberger describes, “The most meaningful past achievement I have witnessed is how the co-building of collaborative infrastructures such as the Dean’s Forum initiative, the SK A2J Network, and CREATE Justice has led to access to justice program development at CREATE Justice, and contributed to justice sector change within and among a variety of organizations.”
The renewed funding for the Coordinator/Director position is being extended to continue the coordination and establishment of action-oriented projects through CREATE Justice. Specifically, the goal is to continue implementing new and existing projects that will have an impact in Saskatchewan, projects such as:
Lowenberger adds, “The next year (2021) will involve, thanks to the support of the Law Foundation of Saskatchewan and the Law Society of Saskatchewan, launching the Saskatchewan Legal Needs Assessment to better understand the current access to justice issues in Saskatchewan. The assessment, through surveying both lawyers and near-to-legal and social service providers will be a key piece in informing the ‘next generation priorities’ and initiatives at CREATE Justice, and in coordinating the SK A2J Network.”
For more information on the Law Foundation, visit https://www.lawfoundation.sk.ca/