The OBA recognizes and supports those members who lend their skills and expertise to providing pro bono legal services to individuals and organizations in need.
Please take a moment to learn more about OBA members who give back to the community and help further the cause of justice in Ontario. Want to be profiled? Contact the OBA Pro Bono Committee.
Samantha Peters, Articling Student
What I do
I am an articling student at the CUPE National Office in the Legal Branch where my practice is primarily labour law and human rights.
Highlight of my pro bono work
I co-created a public legal education initiative along with two other University of Ottawa law students called "Between the Lines" at www.btllaw21.com. We have noticed that the most criminalized and policed communities have limited access to legal information that can empower them, protect them and perhaps even save their lives. As a result, we are breaking down legislation which has been enacted by our government into plain language, line by line. We, further, give space to those using this information to start action projects and initiatives of their own, in their own communities. We have begun with unraveling the carding regulation which came out on July 1, 2016 through the Police Services Act.
I have volunteered at Law Help Ontario in Ottawa through Pro Bono Students Canada, as well as with the Women's Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF)'s "Only Yes Means Yes" and "LEAF at Work" education programs which goes into high schools to teach youth about sexual assault law and their workplace rights, respectively.
I am a translator for Sanctuary for Families' Translation Project where I assist with written document translations from French to English on an as needed basis for attorney's based in New York.
Why I do this pro bono work
Access to justice is a serious issue and those most impacted by this crisis are from communities that I am connected to in some way. As a result, I do pro bono work because I believe that it is incredibly important to use my position as an almost lawyer to support and advocate for the most marginalized and criminalized.
One comment to encourage others
Being a lawyer is an incredible privilege, use it to do good work.