At BWSS we have a long history of engagement with social justice through the law. Our work involves us thinking critically and analytically about the ways in which gender-based violence interfaces with various areas of law and to what extent survivors can achieve justice within the Canadian legal apparatus.

80% of women who access BWSS are dealing with a legal issue.

Every member of our staff team and volunteers provide some type of legal support for survivors who access our services. And our specialized Legal Services and Advocacy Program assist women to navigate these legal systems. Our work extends into legal research, law reform and public legal education. Over the years, BWSS has developed strong collaborations with women’s organizations, immigrant-serving organizations, Indigenous organizations and First Nations, lawyers, law enforcement services and a number of community-based networks and organizations.

We are pleased to continue our work with the University of British Columbia Peter A. Allard School of Law through interns, and events.

And we are thrilled to work with Allard Law School at this year’s Social Justice Law Conference 2020. The conference features Changing Systems –What Can Lawyers and Advocates Do?

Our contribution this year is hosting two case studies of collaborations for effectively changing systems.

1) Coalition of Interveners. Anti-SLAPP Strategies for Cases of Gender Bias at the Supreme Court of Canada – a coalition of anti-violence organizations successfully obtained leave to intervene at the SCC’s November hearing into Anti-SLAPP legislation.

2) Coalition of  Challengers. Pushing Back on Bill 97’s Legislative Amendments to  Refugee Determination – Immigration and refugee lawyers, anti-violence organizations, and women’s organizations challenged the Federal government’s attempts to pass significant amendments to the refugee process in their budget implementation bill that have negatively impacted refugees transiting through the US and, particularly, women refugees who are survivors of domestic violence.

Please join us at this year’s Social Justice Law Conference. Register here.

Saturday, 1 February 2020 from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM at  SFU’s Segal Building – 500 Granville St in Vancouver with Keynote Address by Kasari Govender, Human Rights Commissioner of BC.

We’re grateful for our collaborators Dalya Israel: Executive Director, WAVAW Rape Crisis Centre, Lobat Sadrehaschemi: Lawyer, Embarkation Law, Raji Mangat: Executive Director, West Coast LEAF  and of course our own Rosa Elena Arteaga, Manager of Direct Services and Clinical Practice who will moderate the sessions.  

Conference Agenda:

9:00 – 9:20 am
Doors open – Registration and Coffee/Light Refreshments

9:20 – 9:35 am
Welcome

9:35 – 10:00 am
Keynote Address: Kasari Govender, Human Rights Commissioner of BC

10:00 – 11:10 am
Climate Action: An Intersectional Approach to the Climate Crisis – ways that various legal fields need to collaborate to find approaches and solutions to the climate crisis.

Panel:
-Brent Eichler: Environmental Advocate
-Lee Loftus: Union Activist
-Eugene Kung: Lawyer, West Coast Environmental Law
-Anjali Appadurai: Climate Justice Campaigner, Sierra Club BC
Moderator: Shannon Daub, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

11:10 – 11:25 am
Break

11:25 – 12:35 pm
Trans Rights: Barriers to A2J – issues and approaches to addressing barriers to A2J for Trans Folks such as equitable representation, access to education, healthcare, housing and social inclusion.

Panel:
-Kareem Ibrahim:  Trans Rights Advocate
-Naomi Moses: Lawyer, KFK Law
-Adrienne Smith: Lawyer, Adrienne Smith Law
Moderator: TBC

12:35 – 1:30 pm
Lunch

1:30 – 2:45 pm
Automating Access to In/Justice – issues arising from the expansion of artificial intelligence (AI) into the realm of judicial, tribunal and government decision-making such as the ability to appeal or judicially review AI-assisted adjudication/decisions.

Panel:
-Sancho McCann: Law Student
-Jennifer Raso: Professor, University of Alberta
-Shannon Salter: Chair, Civil Resolution Tribunal
-Darin Thompson: Lawyer, BC Ministry of Attorney General
Moderator: Mary Liston: Professor, Allard School of Law, UBC

2:45 –3:00 pm
Break:

3:00 –4:15 pm
Two  Case Studies of Collaborations for Effectively  Changing Systems: presenters will speak about the issues and the power of organizing to affect systemic changes as well as the challenges, opportunities and outcomes of this collaborative work
1) Coalition of Interveners. Anti-SLAPP Strategies for Cases of Gender Bias at the Supreme Court of Canada – a coalition of anti-violence organizations successfully obtained leave to intervene at the SCC’s November hearing into Anti-SLAPP legislation.
2) Coalition of  Challengers. Pushing Back on Bill 97’s Legislative Amendments to  Refugee Determination – Immigration and refugee lawyers, anti-violence organizations, and women’s organizations challenged the Federal government’s attempts to pass significant amendments to the refugee process in their budget implementation bill that have negatively impacted refugees transiting through the US and, particularly, women refugees who are survivors of domestic violence.

Panel:
-Dalya Israel: Executive Director, WAVAW Rape Crisis Centre
-Lobat Sadrehaschemi: Lawyer, Embarkation Law
-Raji Mangat: Executive Director, West Coast LEAF
Moderator: Rosa Elena Arteaga, Battered Women’s Support Services

4:15 – 4:30 pm
Closing Remarks

4:30 – 5:30 pm
Wine and Cheese Reception

 

 

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