Pivot launches Legal Action Fund

Only three months into 2011 we are already celebrating a number of legal victories – and there are more to come! The prospect of advancing strategic legal cases that can create widespread change is keeping us fired up and poised for action.

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Using the law as a catalyst for positive social change, Pivot Legal Society works to improve the lives of marginalized communities.

That is why we launched the Pivot Legal Action Fund to bring forward high impact legal actions with the capacity to make a powerful and lasting difference in the lives of people living on the margins. Pivot’s legal campaigns focus on breaking down systemic obstacles that inhibit the full realization of human rights. At the core of our work is a commitment to challenging laws and policies that intensify inequality, poverty and social exclusion.

Here are some of the legal actions we have lined up for the spring:

Access to justice at the Supreme Court
The Supreme Court of Canada will hear the Federal Government’s appeal of a BC decision that allowed a former sex worker and a group run by and for street-based sex workers to challenge the criminal laws relating to adult prostitution. This case is really important because a win will increase access to justice for all marginalized people. Bringing forward a legal challenge can be extremely difficult for people living with poverty or social stigma. The ability of an organization to bring forward issues affecting their members creates an important opportunity for social justice cases to be heard.

Access to life saving harm reduction services
We are preparing a challenge to a set of municipal By-Laws that prevent harm reduction services from operating in Abbotsford. The case is about ensuring that life-saving health services, such as needle exchanges, are available to all people who use illicit drugs regardless of what municipality they live in.  

Police dog attacks during arrest
Pivot is representing an individual who is initiating a civil claim and policy complaint after a police officer lost control of his police dog during a wrongful arrest in East Vancouver. The dog attack left our client with significant wounds to his torso. We are hopeful that this action will highlight ongoing problems with unwarranted police dog attacks and create meaningful policy change regarding the use of dogs during arrest.

Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees everyone the right to security of the person and equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination. The high cost of litigation can be a barrier to getting important public interest cases before a judge.  By supporting the Pivot Legal Action Fund you will ensure that some of the most pressing legal issues facing marginalized people get their day in court.

Support the Pivot Legal Action Fund Today!