Public proceedings of the Board

Meeting of the Board of Directors on July 24, 2013


Board members present

John McCamus (Chair); Aly Alibhai; Nancy Cooper; Michelle Haigh; John Liston; James McNee; Derry Millar; James Yakimovich; Robert W. Ward (CEO/Ex Officio)


Janet Budgell, Sue McCaffrey, Stephanie Mealing, Michelle Séguin, Jatinder Singh

1. Meeting agenda

The meeting agenda was adopted.

2. Disclosure of conflict of interest

No conflicts of interest were identified.

3. Chair’s report

The Chair received:

  • two letters from R. Roy McMurtry, both expressing support for the current structure of the community clinic system and grave concerns about LAO’s clinic strategic planning direction. The first letter was written on behalf of McMurtry as well as four others, and included a lengthy commentary. The second was on behalf of the Friends of Community Legal Clinics.
  • an open letter to the Premier from three ethno-specific clinics

Draft responses to all these letters will be circulated to Board members for feedback.

4. Update on African Canadian Legal Clinic (ACLC)

The President and CEO reported on a proposed staff report to be sent to the ACLC as part of the ongoing Alternative Dispute Resolution process.

4.1 Decision

The Board received the report on next steps for African Canadian Legal Clinic under the Dispute Resolution Policy.

5. Lawyer Workforce Report

The Vice-President and General Counsel presented this report and a draft letter to the President of the Society of Energy Professionals setting out LAO’s decision.

This issue will be brought back to the Board for further consideration.

5.1 Decision

The Board approved sending the letter to the Society of Energy Professionals setting out LAO’s decision to decline its request.

6. Next steps in funding issues for clinics

The Board discussed the report of the President and CEO on proposed reductions to clinic budgets and options for LAO in light of:

  • the background/chronology
  • proposals submitted by the ACLCO and by the Ministry of the Attorney General
  • LAO’s independence pursuant to the Legal Aid Services Act
  • the history of the LAO-ACLCO relationship
  • recent disclosure to the ACLCO of the availability of additional funds to offset clinic budget reduction.

6.1 Decision

The Board approved accepting an additional $1 million in funding from the Ministry, rescind the clinic budget reductions with no other conditions, and continue implementation of clinic modernization.

The Chair agreed to speak with the Deputy Attorney General about this option and share the response with the Board.