Saskatchewan Access to Legal Information Conference

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By Melanie Hodges Neufeld, Director of Legal Resources
Law Society of Saskatchewan

On October 20-21, 2017, the Saskatchewan Access to Legal Information Project (SALI) presented the Conference on the Role of Legal Information Providers and Public Libraries in Promoting Access to Justice at the College of Law. The conference brought together legal scholars, library science scholars, legal information providers, and public library representatives from urban, rural, and remote areas of Saskatchewan to discuss the role of librarians in improving access to legal information. The conference was oriented towards developing actionable strategies for making legal information more accessible through public libraries.

Through a series of panels and keynotes speakers targeted to specific questions, the conference explored themes including:

  1. Increasing general public awareness of access to justice issues and the role of libraries;
  2. Determining the differences between legal information and legal advice;
  3. Identifying existing legal information resources and gaps;
  4. Discussing how physical and online library spaces can be used to increase access to legal information;
  5. Increasing empirical information on patrons’ and librarians’ legal information needs.

Each session was followed by small group discussions intended to identify concrete next steps in taking action towards the larger issue of access to legal information.

The Law Society is a proud partner in the SALI project and sees great potential ahead. Please stayed tuned to our blog and future editions of the Benchers’ Digest for updates on the progress of this project.

For more information about the SALI Project, please visit the Create Justice website and see the article Putting the Public First: Saskatchewan Access to Legal Information Project from the Winter, 2016 issue of the Benchers’ Digest at page 6.

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