The Disability Law Intensive (DLI) is a unique opportunity for students at Osgoode Hall Law School to engage in social justice lawyering in the context of a specialty Legal Aid (LAO) clinic specializing in disability law. This innovative program, run in collaboration with ARCH Disability Law Centre, an internationally recognized leader in disability rights law, provides students the opportunity to develop their legal skills while learning about disability rights issues as they intersect with many areas of the law.
What You Will Do
Through a seminar that meets roughly bi-weekly throughout the year you will critically consider the relationship between legal theory and your experience in the clinic. In your final research paper, you will develop an aspect of your work undertaken while at ARCH. Throughout the year, for two days a week, in a clinical placement at ARCH Disability Law Centre, you will be involved in individual client advocacy, community legal education, and systemic law and policy-based reform and advocacy. Unique to this Program, under the direct supervision of ARCH staff lawyers, you will spend one semester focusing exclusively on traditional client advocacy and the other semester on systemic law and policy reform, which ARCH undertakes in partnership with disability organizations throughout Ontario. This division will allow you to concentrate on two very different but connected forms of legal advocacy. In the past, students have had the opportunity to work on Supreme Court of Canada interventions, Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario applications and mediations, class actions, and test case litigation.
What You Will Learn
- foundational lawyering skills of interviewing, negotiation, advocacy, collaboration, and time management
- legal drafting skills – pleadings, letters, submissions
- a deeper understanding of the ethical and professional responsibilities of lawyers
- substantive knowledge of a broad range of law
- how to accommodate clients with disabilities
- insight into real issues that are faced by people with disabilities
- law reform and policy based advocacy
- how to incorporate multi-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary perspectives in understanding the legal issues encountered by people with disabilities
- the distinctive access to justice issues faced by people with disabilities