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 every other Friday throughout the academic year. In the seminar, students develop perspectives that allow them to critically assess and think constructively about prohibitions on discrimination and how these exclusions impact society. Students also learn about the challenges experienced by disadvantaged communities in accessing remedies for violations of fundamental rights. In the same semester as their placement, students complete a research paper that reflects upon the knowledge gained in the seminar and their experience in the placement.