Treasurers are ordinarily elected for two terms of one year. I am in my first year as Treasurer. In order to continue as Treasurer, I must be reelected as a bencher and then be elected by Convocation for a second one year term. If all of this works out as I hope it will, my contribution as an elected bencher and as Treasurer will end in June 2020.
As Treasurer, I have worked hard to ensure that benchers work effectively and collegially together to fulfil our mandate in the public interest. Because of the nature of my role as Treasurer, I am not campaigning for reelection on a particular platform or on particular issues. Rather, I ask for your support to be able to continue to lead the Law Society as Treasurer.
Lawyers and paralegals are self-governing professions The Law Society determines the education and training required for licensing and the standards of competence and professional conduct required of licensees. The Law Society determines who can provide legal services and the scope of legal services that can be provided by licensees.
All of this must be done in the public interest, in support of the rule of law and the cause of justice and to facilitate access to justice.
I have dedicated myself to this work in the Law Society, in professional practice, in professional associations and in teaching and writing.
Having decided that articling and the LPP will continue, the Law Society should now focus on improving competence and professional conduct in practice. We should carefully examine where there are risks to address, consider all possible approaches and set a strategic course.
There are substantial legal needs that are not addressed or are not well addressed. The Law Society is required to facilitate access to justice in determining who may provide legal services. We must take steps to better address access to justice. We must be liberal and creative about who may provide services and we must ensure competent provision of services.
Legal services technology is rapidly evolving. This presents opportunities and challenges. We must encourage lawyers to innovate and we must take advantage of new ways of serving legal needs that are not now effectively served by lawyers and paralegals.
The time has come to recognize that law firms, not just individual lawyers, provide legal services. Law firms should be accountable for their service to clients and their professional conduct.
We must be dedicated to equality, diversity and inclusion in practice. The human rights of our colleagues and the legal needs of our diverse society demands that we do so. We must be dedicated to the work of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples and work to address past injustices.