On May 31, Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic (CSALC) and Chinese Canadian National Council Toronto Chapter (CCNCTO) joined communities, frontline legal clinic workers and OPSEU Local 5118 members across the Greater Toronto Area to draw attention to the devastating impact of legal aid cuts and to demand Ford and his Government withdraw cuts to Legal Aid by hosting a series of “pop-up legal clinics” in front of Conservative MPP constituency offices across the Greater Toronto Area.
Cuts to legal aid will disproportionately impact racialized as well as immigrant communities by limiting their access to justice and prevent them from receiving much needed legal advice. Racialized and immigrant communities with linguistic barriers will face even greater challenge in accessing legal support on issues that affect their lives including housing, employment, immigration and social assistance. As the Chinese Canadian communities in Ontario have a poverty rate of 24.9% (as opposed to 10.8% for non-racialized people), these cuts will hit hard those who are most marginalized in our communities.
More than 20 people from community and allied organizations participated in our event. One of CSALC’s client shared his story and concern over the cut with media.