Continuing the Dialogue – National Self-Represented Litigants Project Report

In October 2018, 15 self-represented litigants (SRLs) and 45 justice system representatives took part in facilitated plenary discussions, small working group discussions focused on specific issues related to SRLs and the justice system, listened to panels presented by both SRLs and justice system insiders, and attended small networking events. Below is a copy of the Continuing the Dialogue: Final Event Report 2018.

Continuing the Dialogue Event Report 2018

East Preston resident pleased with successful migration of her land by Nova Scotia Legal Aid’s Dartmouth Land Title Office

Having clear title to your land is important in more ways than you may realize. Migrating your property to the new land registration system signifies clear title to the government. This, in turn, allows you to have a real say over your property. The following story shows the difference having clear title can make.

A long-time community member of East Preston and client of the Land Title Initiative, who wishes to remain anonymous, learned about the Initiative through a friend. Their friend attended one of the community meetings early this year. Concerned for the community, this individual told the client and others that everyone should apply to ensure clear title to their land. Heeding these words, the client applied to the Initiative.

The client has owned the property since 1997 and wished to have the property migrated into the new land registration system.  Ms. Shanisha Grant, the Staff Lawyer working in the Dartmouth Land Title Office, met with the client to explain the migration process and gather additional information about the property.  Once a historical search of the property was completed and reviewed with the client, the property was successfully migrated to the new land registration system.

The process was speedy, taking only three months to complete the property migration. Ms. Grant received the application this past July and successfully completed the migration by early September 2018.  When talking about her experience with the Initiative, the client stated, “I was very pleased with the experience I had working with the Initiative and the work that was done.” She also expressed having peace of mind, affirming that, “it feels good knowing that it’s done and that I can relax and not have to worry about it anymore.”

Having the land migrated certifies to the government that the client has clear title to her land. She is now free to obtain a mortgage, sell her property, or pass her property down to her children if she wishes.

If you reside, or own real property, in North Preston, East Preston, Cherry Brook/Lake Loon, Sunnyville, or Lincolnville, and have land title issues/need migration services, please contact Nova Scotia Legal Aid to apply for free legal services:

Inquiries can be sent to lti@nslegalaid.ca or by fax to 902-420-6561.

2017-18 Annual Report Summary Booklet

The Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission’s 2017-18 Annual Report Summary Booklet is now available on our website (About Us, Legal Aid Publications) and can be found here:  Annual Report Summary 2017-18

North Preston resident impressed by Land Title Initiative legal services delivered by Nova Scotia Legal Aid Staff Lawyer

In July 2018, Nova Scotia Legal Aid (NSLA) announced that we have commenced providing legal services pursuant to the new Land Title Initiative (LTI) in East Preston, North Preston, Cherry Brook/Lake Loon, Sunnyville and Lincolnville.  In collaboration with a number of government stakeholders, NSLA has been assisting land owners in these communities remove barriers to obtaining migration services and legal title to their land.  This is helping to address the unequal treatment that African Nova Scotians have traditionally faced.

Beazley Cain is one of these Nova Scotians.  Mr. Cain is a lifelong resident of North Preston.  He is an active community member who is happy that this initiative has begun.

Recently, Gordon Blackmore, who is the Staff Lawyer working in our Halifax Land Title Office, met with Mr. Cain to discuss the LTI and his experience with the program. Mr. Cain has two properties that require land titles work.  Mr. Blackmore assisted Mr. Cain by having the title certified, and migrated, for one of his properties.  The necessary legal work for Mr. Cain’s second property is in progress.  This property will require a Certificate of Title.


Gordon Blackmore

Mr. Cain first became aware of the LTI at a meeting at the North Preston Recreation Centre.  He was excited that something was finally being done to address these historic land claims issues. He did admit his initial skepticism because he remembered similar programs in the past.  He was also worried that something would derail the process.

Mr. Cain is happy with the personal service offered by NSLA, indicating he was impressed with our punctuality and professionalism.  He was pleased that we are able to meet him at a time and location that is convenient for him.  Above all, he is thrilled to have his own lawyer.  He said, “It feels good knowing I have someone to look to” (for help with the LTI process).

Mr. Cain said that the time is right for land title clarification.  He has children and wants to make sure that his children are left clear title to the family property when he dies.

The Dartmouth Land Title Office is also fully operational and a story on the success clients of that Office are also experiencing will be released in the near future.

If you reside, or own real property, in North Preston, East Preston, Cherry Brook/Lake Loom, Sunnyville, or Lincolnville, and have title issues/need migration services, please contact Nova Scotia Legal Aid to apply for free legal services:

Inquiries can be sent to lti@nslegalaid.ca or by fax to 902-420-6561.

2017-18 Annual Report

The Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission’s 2017-18 Annual Report is now available on our website and can be found here:  2017-18 Annual Report

Racial Profiling/Street Checks Survey | Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission

The Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission is seeking input from HRM residents on their experiences with the police practice of street checks and racial profiling.

Nova Scotia Legal Aid would strongly encourage the public and any HRM staff to participate in this important work. Results from this survey will be incorporated in the report of Professor Scott Wortley, the expert hired to make findings on this issue.

Systemic racism has long been recognized as a reality that members of our African Nova Scotian communities must face on a daily basis.

This is an opportunity to provide feedback on personal experiences with the police and perhaps contribute to meaningful change moving forward. The survey takes approximately ten minutes, the link can be found below.

https://humanrights.novascotia.ca/survey

Staff Lawyer Position – Dartmouth Criminal Office

STAFF LAWYER POSITION

NOVA SCOTIA LEGAL AID

DARTMOUTH CRIMINAL OFFICE

 

Position:  Staff Lawyer position in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia practicing criminal and social justice law.  This is an eighteen month (18) contract position.

Qualifications:  Successful candidate must be a practicing, insured member in good standing of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society with a thorough understanding of criminal and social justice law.  Candidates should have experience in representing clients before the courts.  Competency to conduct legal proceedings in both the English and French languages would be an asset.  Start date to be as soon as possible.

Salary Range:  Per Legal Aid salary scale based on “Relevant Experience” as determined by the Commission at time of hire plus benefits.

We offer:

  • Vision, Dental, Health and Prescription Drug Plan
  • Confidential Employee Assistance Program
  • Fitness Incentives
  • Great Wellness Programs and Activities

Closing Date:     Friday, October 12, 2018 at 4:30 PM

Reply To:

Evelyn Adesida
Human Resources (HR) Specialist
Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission
920-1701 Hollis Street
Halifax, NS  B3J 3M8
Tel: 902-420-6588
evelyn.adesida@nslegalaid.ca

Our goal is to be a diverse workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the citizens we serve.  We have an Employment Equity Policy and welcome applications from historically disadvantaged groups, including: Indigenous People, African Nova Scotians and Other Racially Visible Persons, Persons with Disabilities, and Women in occupations or positions where they are under-represented.  If you are a member of one of the equity groups, you are encouraged to self-identify, on your application form, cover letter, or resume.

While we appreciate receiving all applications, only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.  All applications will be held in strict confidence.

 

NSLA Indigenous Social Worker at Native Council of Nova Scotia AGM

Pictured is Crystal Hill, Indigenous Social Worker, at the Native Council of Nova Scotia’s Annual General Meeting in Truro on September 15, 2018. By attending the AGM of the NCNS, Crystal was able to connect with the off-reserve Indigenous population across the Province.  This was an opportunity made available to Crystal through developed networks at the NCNS.  Crystal took along some hand-beaded Christmas balls she made to attract people to the table and to offer for door prizes.

Staff Lawyer Position – Truro

STAFF LAWYER POSITION

NOVA SCOTIA LEGAL AID TRURO

 

Position:  Staff Lawyer position in Truro, Nova Scotia, practicing family and social justice law.  This is an eighteen month (18) contract position to cover a secondment.

Qualifications:  Successful candidate must be a practicing, insured member in good standing of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society with a thorough understanding of family and social justice law.  Candidates should have experience in representing clients before the courts.  Competency to conduct legal proceedings in both the English and French languages would be an asset.  Start date to be as soon as possible.

Salary Range:  Per Legal Aid salary scale based on “Relevant Experience” as determined by the Commission at time of hire plus benefits.

Closing Date:     Tuesday, October 9, 2018 at 4:30 PM

Reply To:

Evelyn Adesida
Human Resources (HR) Specialist
Nova Scotia Legal Aid Commission
920-1701 Hollis Street,
Halifax, NS  B3J 3M8
Tel: 902-420-6588
evelyn.adesida@nslegalaid.ca

Our goal is to be a diverse workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the citizens we serve.  We have an Employment Equity Policy and welcome applications from historically disadvantaged groups, including: Indigenous People, African Nova Scotians and Other Racially Visible Persons, Persons with Disabilities, and Women in occupations or positions where they are under-represented.  If you are a member of one of the equity groups, you are encouraged to self-identify, on your application form, cover letter, or resume.

While we appreciate receiving all applications, only applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.  All applications will be held in strict confidence.

Mental Health Court – Dartmouth

Are you wondering how the Mental Health Court Program in Dartmouth works? Here is a great story by CBC The National which aired on September 25, 2018:  https://www.cbc.ca/news/thenational/canada-s-mental-health-courts-how-they-work-and-why-they-exist-1.4838785