July 24, 2019

Lenczner Slaght Supports Access to Advocacy Internships

Providing students with more opportunities to gain firsthand advocacy experience.

Lenczner Slaght has partnered with law schools to fund and launch summer internships for first and second year students who are interested in developing their advocacy skills at organizations with a focus on access to justice and social responsibility. Each of the students were chosen by their school’s career offices and preference was given to students with financial need and/or those who are first-generation lawyers.

Not only will these internships provide the next generation of advocates with more opportunities to gain advocacy experience, we hope it will help organizations, who would otherwise be unable to afford a summer intern, advance their public interest mandates.

Shara Roy, Partner and co-lead of our student program, says: “Through these internships focused on advocacy training and public interest, Lenczner Slaght hopes to extend its reach – helping students to hone their advocacy skills and for public interest organizations to benefit from their assistance. ‘Where the best get better’ is not just for Bay Street.”

Brian Kolenda, Partner and co-lead of our student program, says: “We are very pleased to be able to support these fantastic students in developing their advocacy skills while working hard for some very worthy causes.”

See below for more details on our 2019 students:

Tersha DeKoning, Queen’s Law – Innocence Canada

Tersha is working to achieve Innocence Canada’s mandate to 1) identify, advocate for, aid, and exonerate innocent individuals wrongly convicted of a crime they did not commit and 2) prevent wrongful convictions through legal reform and education.

Zahra Attir, Queen’s Law – Community Advocacy and Legal Centre

Zahra is interning with an independent community-based legal clinic funded by Legal Aid Ontario. She will be supporting clinic staff to help solve the unique legal problems faced by people living on a low income or in poverty.

Quinn Brown, Queen’s Law – United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

Quinn is interning full time with UNHCR to facilitate advocacy and conduct legal and policy research.

Adam Award, Queen’s Law – Centre for Law and Democracy

Adam is supporting CLD’s work to promote, protect and develop those human rights which serve as the foundation for democracy. This includes the rights to freedom of expression, to vote and participate in governance, to access information, and to freedom of assembly and association.

Angel Leung, UT LawIndustrial Accident Victims’ Group of Ontario

Angel is working at a clinic that offers free legal services to injured workers and their families funded by Legal Aid Ontario. She will be conducting research exploring how human rights complaints under the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Charter can be brought for workers with significant pre-existing barriers to the labour market, and developing practical options and strategies for use in the litigation of these issues.

Justyne Leslie, Schulich School of Law – Dartmouth Provincial Court, Nova Scotia Supreme Court (Family & General Division), Nova Scotia Court of Appeal

Justyne is spending a few weeks at each courthouse conducting legal research, drafting opinions and case summaries, preparing trial memos, performing legal analysis, briefing the judges on legal issues, and reviewing and making recommendations on motions. She will also work on a research project for Justice Anne Derrick on Cultural Impact Assessments in the sentencing of African-Canadians.

Melissa Bowen, Osgoode Hall Law School – Centre for Equality Rights in Accommodation

Melissa is working at a not-for-profit charity that defends housing rights and human rights by educating individuals and communities, advancing progressive and inclusive housing law and policy, and providing legal information and services to marginalized Ontarians.