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What I’m looking for in a bencher

By Inga Andriessen

If you’re not an Ontario lawyer, then this blog is not for you. This is about our upcoming bencher election for the Law Society of Ontario (LSO). Benchers are elected representatives of Ontario lawyers and regulate the conduct of lawyers in Ontario.

I’m looking for a bencher who will not hit me with a surprise agenda. I didn’t appreciate the vote from LSUC to LSO coming out of the blue and don’t want that to happen again.

I’m looking for a bencher who supports the Law Practice Program (LPP). It’s a better, more consistent lawyer who emerges from the LPP rather than from articling.

I’m looking for a bencher who believes there is a difference between paralegals (who I value) and lawyers and that allowing paralegals to practice in complicated areas of family law, without a law degree is not access to justice, it’s access to the perception of justice.

I’m looking for a bencher who is willing to tackle the complicated issue of too many lawyers in Ontario and not enough jobs for those lawyers.

I’m looking for a bencher who is willing to advance an advertising campaign aimed at high school students warning them of the job shortage and possible massive student loan debt they’ll incur to become lawyers.

Are you that bencher? If so, let me know!

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