The establishment of the Saskatchewan Access to Justice Week is a spinoff of the “Putting the Public First” topic that was addressed by participants at the 2016 meeting of the Dean’s Forum on Access to Justice and Dispute Resolution (the Dean’s Forum) – participants at that meeting identified, “a provincial strategy must embrace multiple vehicles and approaches to engagement to ensure that different communities within the public, each who face diverse access to justice barriers are both engaged and meaningfully heard” (at 5).

The Saskatchewan Access to Justice Week is one vehicle and approach to engage different communities in the access to justice conversation. 

The week will provide opportunities to:

  • Engage new and diverse voices in the access to justice conversation; and
  • Highlight initiatives that aim to improve access to justice for Saskatchewan residents. 

This year, Saskatchewan is collaborating with local and national partners to co-host A2J Week events aimed at engaging both justice stakeholders and the public at large. We invite you to get involved in the events, and join the conversation!


 A closer look: The justice sector's response to the TRC calls to action (Ontario)

Enhancing the legal professions’ relationships with First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples is a priority in advancing access to justice. This session, moderated by Treasurer Teresa Donnelly, explores the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s calls to action relevant to the justice sector, and examines the unique cultural, historical, and socio-economic barriers that continue to impact Indigenous Peoples’ access to and interaction with the Canadian justice system. Indigenous legal professionals will provide insights on how these barriers can be addressed to provide better legal services to Indigenous communities. 

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Access to Justice: Indigenous Perspectives (Manitoba)

Moderator: Danielle Morrison, Lawyer Panelists: Hon. Murray Sinclair, Brad Regehr, Lawyer, Dr. Pam Palmater, Lawyer, Professor, and a Chair in Indigenous Governance





Reflections on the impact of COVID-19 on online adjudication with Moderator Dr. Beth Bilson, Q.C. (Saskatchewan)

This session will involve a conversation reflecting on the past year with respect to online adjudication and dispute resolution in a variety of settings. Panelists will address questions such as, what went well with advancements with online adjudication, and what could have gone better? What online adjudication issues could have been prevented if we knew COVID-19 was going to happen, and we had more time to prepare to turn to online adjudication? What would we have done differently, if anything? Given the advancements and potential shortcomings of online adjudication, what benefits does it provide from an access to justice perspective? What adjustments and tools are around to stay?

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Shannon Salter (Chair, Civil Resolution Tribunal)

Chief Judge Shannon Metivier (Provincial Court of Saskatchewan)

Daniel Shapiro, Q.C. (Chartered Arbitrator, Adjudicator & Mediator)

1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. CST


People-centered access to justice: Best practices for serving clients with mental health needs (Ontario)

The pandemic has created a renewed focus on mental health, especially within the justice sector. Legal professionals are not only striving to look after their own mental health and wellness but are often serving clients facing mental health challenges themselves.

The panel of lawyers with experience acting for clients with mental health needs will discuss how to identify when your client may be facing mental health challenges and what people-centred approaches will help both you and your client successfully navigate these challenges together.

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Legal Aid Plans of Canada (All day) - Duty Counsel Day

On October 27th learn about Duty Counsel and tell your fellow Canadians. The power to navigate the justice system is in your hands.


Developing and Engaging in a Reconciliation Mapping Exercise (Saskatchewan)

Description: As part of its commitment to implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Calls to Action, the Law Society of Saskatchewan is undertaking a Reconciliation Mapping Exercise, developed and facilitated by the Office of the Treaty Commissioner (OTC) to determine a baseline of reconciliation efforts and support the development of recommendations for forward progress. The OTC has worked with partner organizations to develop a common vision for successful Truth and Reconciliation and a methodology for guiding and measuring progress in Saskatchewan aimed at inspiring action, informing reconciliation learning, and increasing collective impact. The OTC has identified indicators to measure progress based on foundational reports such as the TRC Calls to Action, the MMIWG Calls for Justice, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. These indicators have been used to create a logic or outcomes model for determining a possible path that an individual, an organization and society can grow towards. In turn, a growth model summarizes the logic model into a series of steps for the advancement of truth and reconciliation, starting with capacity change and moving to behavioural change and then systems change. During this session, the OTC and Law Society of Saskatchewan will discuss the importance of the Reconciliation Mapping Exercise, its methodology, experiences to date, and offer perspectives on lessons and good practices.


Mary Culbertson, Commissioner, Office of the Treaty Commissioner

Pamela R. Kovacs, Senior Policy Counsel Law Society of Saskatchewan

Foluke LaosebikanQ.C., President, Law Society of Saskatchewan

Rhett Sangster, Director, Reconciliation and Community Partnerships, Office of the Treaty Commissioner

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12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. CST


Rural Access to Justice (Atlantic Provinces)

Join us to hear justice professionals from across rural Atlantic Canada discuss the various challenges presented by the access to justice crisis in their region. Panelists will share and compare challenges in their respective regions and discuss possible solutions.

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Advancing Community-Based Justice (Action Committee on A2J)

Keynote Rebecca Sandefur, followed by a panel of community-based workers across Canada

This session will explore the critical work done by community-based organizations that support and assist people with their housing, immigration, health care, employment and other problems with legal dimensions. Our keynote for this event will be Rebecca Sandefur, a leading American access to justice scholar. This will be followed by a panel on community-based workers across Canada who will share their views on what is working and what is not, and what they have learned about providing responsive, effective services. Lastly, we will open up the conversation to participants focussing on how the justice system can better support the community based work.

Register Here:

9:00 am PST
10:00 am MST
11:00 am CST
12:00 pm EST
1:00 pm AST


Disability Justice: Accessibility and Beyond with Ameil Joseph, David Lepofsky, and Greg McMeekin (Alberta)

Disability justice is a core issue for millions of Canadians. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted many of the continuing injustices faced by Canadians with disabilities/disabled Canadians: punitive social assistance programs, substandard conditions in supportive housing, and ableist assumptions in the delivery of healthcare, to name a few. Accessibility legislation is one important element of disability justice. Speakers in this session will detail what accessibility legislation does and why it is important. They will describe the development and implementation of accessibility legislation in Ontario and federally, as well as the current efforts to have such legislation adopted in Alberta. They will reflect on the promise and limits of law reform and invite us to consider “what else” we must do to achieve real disability justice in Canada.

Register Here:

11:00 am PST
12:00 pm MST
1:00 pm CST
2:00 pm EST
3:00 pm AST

It's in YOUR Court: Resolving Family Law Problems Out-of-Court (Saskatchewan)

In the session, we will use a case scenario to explore how parties may resolve family law issues outside the courtroom, and what resources are available to assist parties in resolving issues.

Kim Newsham, Crown Counsel, Family Justice Services Division, Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice and Attorney General and Joel Janow, Executive Director, , Public Legal Education Association of Saskatchewan

Register Here:

Qualifies for 1 CPD Hour

Join the conversation

We want to hear from you!  Share your access to justice ideas, work, announcements, photos, reports on social media using the hashtag #SKA2J2021

To view full coverage of the sixth annual Access to Justice Week, follow the Law Society of Saskatchewan’s Blog, Legal Sourcery at 

** This event may qualify for CPD credits for lawyers.
*** Note that events and speakers are subject to change. Check this page often for current event information.

Past events