If you attend court March 6, you may notice something a little odd. Don’t be surprised if you see members of the legal community donning traditional barrister’s wigs, rainbow wigs and other wacky wigs.
The wigs are part of “Flip Your Wig for Justice” — an awareness campaign and pledge-based fundraising event, in support of access to justice in Ontario. The campaign plays on the combination of the barrister’s wig and the turn of phrase “Flip Your Wig,” meaning to express outrage. Teams have already started taking pledges for the event.
Brian Houghton is a paralegal and Litigation Projects Manager at Pro Bono Law Ontario. He urges paralegals to support Flip Your Wig for Justice.
“For the past several years, we’ve been hearing that more and more people are going to court without legal representation or giving up all together because the system is difficult to navigate,” Houghton says. “We are all entitled to access justice. Let’s make the legal system attainable for everyone, represented or not.”
Funds raised will support access to justice programs run by the non-profits who founded the initiative.
On March 6th, participants will wear a traditional judicial wig, or wacky wig, for the day. The event will raise funds for:
- Association in Defense of the Wrongly Convicted (AIDWYC)
- Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA)
- Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO)
- The Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children (METRAC)
- Ontario Justice Education Network (OJEN)
- Pro Bono Law Ontario (PBLO)
- Pro Bono Students Canada (PBSC)
These organizations provide a variety of services, including assisting low-income, unrepresented persons. They:
• Provide free legal help for people who can’t afford to pay a lawyer
• Disseminate legal information to people who need help understanding their legal problems
• Pursue justice for individuals who have been wrongfully convicted
• Educate youth about the legal system and their rights and responsibilities as Canadians
• Expose rights violations in Canada
• Encourage lawyers to donate their time to provide free legal assistance
Access to justice has been called a crisis in Canada. The number of Canadians who face a legal dispute or injustice continues to grow.
Donate or Register for the event