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What's New

As of November, new rules apply when employers in Ontario ask people for police record checks. This month's On the Radar highlights some of these new rules.

Toronto, ON – Problems with landlords, unfair treatment at work, and getting separated or divorced: these are some of the issues that people in Ontario face every day. Finding reliable and practical legal information to understand and address these problems is not easy, despite the wealth of information available online. For Franco-Ontarians, this is compounded by the fact that access to French language services and resources is more limited.

Now, Franco-Ontarians can go to Justice pas-à-pas – a new website launched on November 27 at a reception at the Law Society of Ontario.

"Steps to Justice has proven to be an indispensable resource. Expanding this important, high quality service to serve the Franco-Ontarian community is a meaningful step towards our larger goal of a barrier-free justice system that is accessible, affordable, and efficient for everyone," said Caroline Mulroney, Attorney General and Minister of Francophone Affairs.

Justice pas-à-pas presents easy-to-understand, step-by-step information on common issues that people experience in many areas of law, including family, housing, employment, consumer and criminal law. The website is designed to:

  • Equip people to work through their legal problems using simple, easy-to-understand steps
  • Provide practical tools such as checklists, fillable forms, and self-help guides
  • Give referral information for legal and social services that serve Francophones across Ontario.

Justice pas-à-pas aims to help lower income Ontarians who can access online resources, as well as the front-line community workers who are often called upon to help them with legal problems.

Led by Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO), Justice pas-à-pas is a collaboration of key justice sector players. An advisory committee of leading justice and community organizations serving Francophone communities helps ensure the information available on Justice pas-à-pas meets the needs of Franco-Ontarians. These advisors include the Association des juristes d'expression française de l'Ontario, the Centre francophone de Toronto, the Action ontarienne contre la violence faite aux femmes, Mouvement des femmes immigrantes francophones, the Centre des services communautaires de Vanier, Legal Aid Ontario, and community legal clinics in Sudbury, Hamilton, and Windsor-Essex.

"Justice pas-à-pas follows on the very successful Steps to Justice website that was launched last year," said Julie Mathews, executive director of CLEO. "CLEO is committed to ensuring that people in Ontario can connect with clear, accurate online information to help them understand their legal rights in both official languages."

Justice pas-à-pas and Steps to Justice are led by CLEO and bring together key justice sector players such as the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General, the Superior Court of Justice and the Ontario Court of Justice, the Social Justice Tribunals of Ontario, Legal Aid Ontario, the Law Society of Ontario, the Ontario Justice Education Network, and the Association of Community Legal Clinics of Ontario.

These justice sector partners collaborate on content development to ensure the legal information is accurate and practical, and the websites are updated regularly based on their input and changes in the law. A key feature of both Justice pas-à-pas and Steps to Justice is that justice sector and community organizations can embed the legal content on their own websites – meaning that it is widely available on websites across the province.

"Many justice sector organizations have come together to develop Steps to Justice, a website that helps people work through their legal problems, said Malcolm Mercer, Treasurer of the Law Society of Ontario. "It's an essential place for people to go for practical information they can rely on."

About Justice pas-à-pas and Steps to Justice:

Led by Community Legal Education Ontario, Justice pas-à-pas and Steps to Justice are collaborative projects of leading justice sector organizations. They are signature initiatives of The Action Group on Access to Justice.

About CLEO

CLEO (Community Legal Education Ontario/Éducation juridique communautaire Ontario) is a non-profit organization that has provided accurate and easy-to-understand information and education about the law for people in Ontario for over 40 years, particularly those who have low incomes or other disadvantages. CLEO is funded by Legal Aid Ontario, the Department of Justice Canada, and the Law Foundation of Ontario.

About TAG

The Action Group on Access to Justice (TAG) was established by the Law Society of Ontario in 2015 to facilitate better coordination and collaboration across the justice sector. With funding from the Law Foundation of Ontario, TAG works with a range of justice stakeholders to develop meaningful, public-centred solutions that advance systemic change.

For more information (data, photos, interviews), please contact: Deb Bourk, Communications Manager, 416 408 4420, ext 842 or deb.bourk@cleo.on.ca.

Recreational cannabis was legalized in Canada on October 17, 2018. But cannabis is still highly regulated and many activities involving it remain against the law.

This month's On the Radar looks at some of the new federal and provincial laws about recreational cannabis that apply within Ontario, with a focus on criminal law and tenants' rights.

This summer, some of the rules for payday lenders were changed to give borrowers more protection.

This month's On the Radar outlines some of the main rules and highlights what's new.

People can work part-time while getting most types of Employment Insurance (EI) benefits. Some of the rules about how much of their earnings they can keep changed on August 12, 2018.

This month's On the Radar talks about these changes and gives some examples of how the rules apply.

Many workers don't know about their right to take personal emergency leave. And people may think that they don't have this right because they work part-time or are new at their job.

This month's On the Radar is about personal emergency leave, who gets it, and how it can be used.

On June 7, people in Ontario elect the next provincial government. In this issue of On the Radar, we look at what citizens need to do on election day to prove that they have the right to vote.

Use CLEO's online tool to help you fill out the court forms you need to apply for a divorce.

As of March 1, businesses selling certain products or services can't phone people or come to their homes without being invited.

This month's On the Radar explains these new rules and reviews the existing rules that apply to most types of door-to-door sales.

Starting April 30, 2018, most residential landlords and tenants in Ontario will have to use the government's new standard lease.

This month's On the Radar explains the rules about using it.

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