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Black Legal Action Centre History

We are a non-profit legal clinic that provides free legal advice to low- and no-income Black Ontario residents. Founded in 2017, the Black Legal Action Centre (BLAC) is an independent, non-profit community law clinic that addresses individual and systemic anti-Black racism by providing free legal services, conducting research, developing public legal education materials, and participating in test cases and legislative reforms. A society in which anti-Black racism is meaningfully named and addressed; where the humanity and dignity of Black people are at the center; where the laws and legal system are fair and equitable; and where racial justice and the full participation of all blacks in society are achieved. In September 2017, the African Canadian Legal Clinic (CCLA), established in 1994 to address anti-Black racism and other forms of systemic and institutional discrimination in Canada, was funded by Legal Aid Ontario, the agency responsible for administering the legal aid program in the province. BLAC wants people to turn to the clinic to develop strategies with communities and individuals on how to challenge them through advocacy or legal action, depending on the facts. Legal Aid Ontario said CCLA`s management and board of directors were deemed a “fundamental breach” of their obligations to the community. Poor financial management, lack of transparency and lack of accountability raise serious concerns, she noted. He stated that CCLA`s management and board of directors had not considered hundreds of thousands of dollars for customer service and had repeatedly failed to meet their obligations, despite the fact that they had been given seven years to take certain steps and many opportunities to do so. However, CCLA responded that LAO`s orientation of the legal clinic was not based on fiduciary mismanagement of public funds. By contacting other legal organizations and clinics, Francis has developed a reference list for those calling for immigration issues.

In its response, BLAC wrote an open letter that received considerable support and feedback from other clinics, organizations, individuals and allies across the province. We define anti-Black racism as policies and practices rooted in Canadian institutions that reflect and reinforce the beliefs, attitudes, prejudices, stereotypes and discrimination directed against people of Black African descent and rooted in the unique history and experience of slavery and colonization in Canada. Do you know of a Black Canadian story that we should cover? Write us an e-mail: info(at)byblacks.com. “As a Black woman and lawyer, this work is particularly meaningful to me, and I look forward to the opportunity to continue to build on the progress BLAC has already made,” said Teklu. “I look forward to serving those who deserve a fair and just trial and advocating for systemic justice to free all Black Ontarians. Teklu has a long history of working to eradicate anti-Black racism in the justice system and provides legal assistance to members of Ontario`s Black communities. For the past six years, she has worked at Legal Aid Ontario, where she implemented a major service delivery plan for Black Ontarians, provided critical support in the adoption of the BLAC, and drafted LAO`s Racialized Community Strategy. She has also facilitated anti-racism training for hundreds of judges, justices of the peace, lawyers, regulators, judges and educators across the country. In 2019 and 2020, she was an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. Founded in 2017, BLAC is an independent, not-for-profit legal clinic that addresses individual and systemic anti-Black racism by conducting research, engaging in structural change, and providing legal services to members of Ontario`s Black communities. It is funded by Legal Aid Ontario and led by a volunteer board. BlaC`s strategic plan provides the framework for 2022-2027.

This strategic plan will form the basis on which we will develop a targeted list of valid, necessary and measurable measures and results. Internally, it provides the basis for more detailed operational plans to ensure that all of BLAC`s organizational activities are linked to results. Through agreements with organizations that serve the Black community, BLAC would send a legal worker or community lawyer once a month to be in the room to make recordings for the day. This website contains general legal information for Ontario, Canada. This is not legal advice for a specific legal issue. Lesa Francis, an administrative assistant and admissions officer, says they needed time to get used to what was expected. In terms of individual representation, people must be financially eligible, but BLAC is intervening alongside the Canadian Association of Black Lawyers in a case where the court is investigating the use of racial and cultural ratings in connection with the conviction of a Black offender.