The Anti-Discrimination Program is an exciting collaboration between Osgoode and the Human Rights Legal Support Centre. The Centre offer human rights legal services to individuals throughout Ontario who have experienced discrimination contrary to the Ontario Human Rights Code. The program offers students the opportunity to develop specialized knowledge of anti-discrimination law and to see an administrative law process from beginning to end.
The Program begins with a week of intensive training at the end of August to prepare students for their placement at the Centre. During their placements, which can occur either in the fall or winter semester, students work Monday through Thursday at the Centre in downtown Toronto. Students participate in the Centre’s public inquiries service and are responsible for conducting detailed legal interviews on files that are referred from intake. In addition, students draft legal documents, partner with a Centre lawyer to prepare and attend a mediation, and partner with a lawyer on a file that is scheduled for hearing by the Tribunal.
Seminar meetings are held on every other Friday throughout the academic year. In the seminar, students develop perspectives from which to understand, critically assess and think constructively about prohibitions on discrimination and their impact on society, and the challenges of ensuring access to remedies for violations of fundamental rights experienced by disadvantaged communities. In the same semester as their placement, students complete a research paper which reflects their learning in the seminar and their experience in the placement.
Read more about the student experience here.
The 15-credit program is open to 6 students per term. Students receive a letter grade for the seminar (2 credits) and for their research papers (3 credits). Students’ work during the placement at the Centre is graded on a credit/no credit basis (10 credits). A written evaluation of each student’s work during the placement is prepared by the Academic Director, in conjunction with the Coordinator and the student’s lawyer mentor and legal manager. The written evaluation becomes part of the student’s transcript.
There are no required courses. Administrative Law and Discrimination and the Law are preferred courses that students are encouraged to take prior to starting their placements.