APB to propose amendment to Law Society of BC Member Resolution mandating pro bono and legal aid service
At the Law Society of BC's Annual General Meeting on October 30, the Access Pro Bono Society of BC will propose an amendment by substitution to Member Resolution 2 that --if otherwise successful-- would mandate pro bono and/or legal aid service by all BC lawyers. Member Resolution 2 can be read here.
Though APB is pleased to see two member resolutions aimed at increasing member participation in pro bono work on the apparent premise that lawyers have a professional obligation to make critical legal services available to people who cannot afford to pay for them, it believes that impactful access to justice in BC would be better achieved by more qualified lawyers willingly engaging in pro bono and legal aid service.
APB's proposed amendment reads: "The Law Society of British Columbia shall consider and develop new ways to both incentivize, and reduce barriers to, member engagement in legal aid and pro bono service provision, in aim of reaching universal member engagement with an annual average of 50 legal aid and/or pro bono service hours per member.”