The students and faculty who volunteer their time with the Innocence Project have literally changed lives in the pursuit of justice for the wrongfully convicted. The Innocence Project was founded by two Osgoode professors and alumni, Alan Young (who is currently the Director of the Innocence Project), and the late Dianne Martin, in 1997. Under the supervision of faculty, students enrolled in the Innocence Project examine cases of suspected wrongful conviction and where feasible, reinvestigate and seek proof of their innocence. Students receive academic credit for their part-time work over the duration of an academic year.
The Innocence Project has had a number of successes. In March 2009, Romeo Phillion was released after 31 years of incarceration when the Innocence Project helped bring new evidence to light. The Project has also assisted such individuals as Gary Staples and Leonard Peltier, and in other cases has offered support to the Association in Defence of the Wrongfully Convicted (AIDWYC). The Innocence Project also compiled research for the Commission on Proceedings involving Guy Paul Morin, has intervened in cases before the Supreme Court of Canada, and made submissions to the federal Minister of Justice concerning remedies for wrongful conviction.