2019 Bi-Monthly Update Series: March/April

To keep you informed, here are some highlights of changes and updates made to Clicklaw in March and April:

Jan-Feb | Mar-Apr | May-Jun | Jul-Aug | Sep-Oct | Nov-Dec


Motor Vehicle Accidents and Injuries Solution Explorer
by Civil Resolutions Tribunal

On April 1, 2019, the Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) started resolving many motor vehicle injury (MVI) personal injury disputes in British Columbia. This includes determinations of whether an injury is a “minor injury”, disputes about accident benefits, and disputes about damages and fault up to $50,000. The Solution Explorer is the first step in the online CRT process, with free legal information and tools.

Ordering a Court Transcript
by The National Self-Represented Litigants Project

This guide outlines the steps that are required to order court transcripts in each province/territory. It is a compilation of information obtained from court websites, telephone & email conversations with court services/transcript services at different courthouses, and from legal professionals.

Disability Alliance BC

The following help sheets have been updated:

Disability Alliance BC logo

Legal Services Society

Legal Services Society logo

Mediate BC

Mediate BC has launched a new website, providing an easy way to learn everything you need to know about mediation, and help you find the right mediator. The updated listings on Clicklaw include:

People’s Law School

People's Law School logo
  • Being an Executor – this updated booklet is for people who have been asked to be an executor in a will.
  • Power of Attorney – this updated booklet tells you how a power of attorney can be used to give someone the legal power to take care of financial and legal matters for you.
  • Preparing Your Will – this updated publication explains how to prepare a will, what to consider when appointing an executor, and next steps after the will is finished.
  • Essentials of Work & the Law (formerly Working in BC) – this updated booklet offers information about your rights & responsibilities as a worker.
  • Unbundled Legal Services – this new website helps the public understand “unbundling”, a new service model for law in British Columbia.

Rise Women’s Virtual Legal Clinic (VLC)
from Rise Women’s Legal Centre

Provides free and low-cost legal services to self-identified women who live outside of the geographic zone from Whistler to Chilliwack (inclusive). The clinic offers a range of services, including information and summary advice, document drafting, and legal coaching for self-represented litigants.

Drop-in Legal Clinic at Ray-Cam Community Centre
from Society for Children and Youth of BC

This new drop-in legal clinic provides legal help for young people who are experiencing problems relating to family law, child protection, a breach of your human rights and many other legal issues.

North Shore Pro Bono

  • Dispute Resolution Education – education and coaching workshops regarding separation, divorce, parenting arrangements, support and division of property and debt.
  • Pro Bono Estate Planning – estate planning assistance for low-income individuals who want to ensure that they have a valid will and all documents (incl. Power of Attorney & Representation Agreement) in place to handle their financial & personal matters should they not be able to.
  • Pro Bono Family Mediation – family mediation for low income individuals with concerns in the areas of property division, support and custody.

Project Inclusion: Confronting Anti-Homeless and Anti-Substance User Stigma in British Columbia
by Pivot Legal Society

Project Inclusion is a comprehensive study into the ways in which specific laws and policies in policing, health care, and the court system directly undermine the health and safety of people who are homeless and living with substance use issues by trapping them in a cycle of criminalization.

Red Women Rising: Indigenous Women Survivors in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside
by Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre

This comprehensive report is based on the lived experience, leadership, and expertise of Indigenous survivors. The report places Indigenous women survivors at the center, rather than as a secondary reference. It proposes 35 key recommendations and goes into more details in its 200 recommendations.

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Visualizing Data for Legal Advocacy

by Peter Kim, Communications & Digital Engagement Manager, Pivot Legal Society

Pivot Legal Society’s mission is to target and remove systemic barriers to justice for communities affected by poverty and social exclusion. We do this through strategic litigation, advocacy, and public education and outreach to empower those affected by homelessness, police violence, people engaged in sex work, and individuals who use substances.

Winning the court of public opinion

As a legal advocacy organization, our most pressing battles to advance the rights of disenfranchised communities are fought in the courtrooms of law; but in today’s digital age, where the flow of information is never-ending, we strive for change in the court of public opinion as well. We do this through our use of data as a powerful visual tool to convey meaning in an accessible manner.

Making sense of data using interactive infographics

Our four campaign areas—sex work, drug policy, homelessness, and police accountability—are richly supported by data sets and research that remains, in large part, inaccessible from mainstream consumption. Pivot translates this information into a meaningful form to enhance its communications campaigns: interactive infographics.

Click on the image to view the interactive infograph
Click on the image to view the interactive infograph

We use data to tell a story, be it the dire urgency of the current overdose epidemic or ways in which police enforcement interferes with public health efforts. Interactive infographics deliver meaning instantly. Where a paragraph of words struggles to convey its message in minutes, a graph or chart can effortlessly deliver meaning within seconds.

 

Click on the image to view the interactive infographic
Click on the image to view the interactive infographic

This is significant because of the way in which people consume information in the social media age. Words alone often fail to register because of shortened attention spans and a propensity to rapidly scroll on our smartphones. We have become an audience spoiled by choice and quantity. Infographics are that visual aid to capture the interest of the easily distracted and draw them in.

 

Click on the image to interact with the graph on Pivot Legal Society's website
Click on the image to interact with the graph on Pivot Legal Society’s website

Increasing online engagement

We have seen a measurable impact in the way our visuals have engaged our online audience. This blog post on the scale of British Columbia’s overdose crisis and harm reduction efforts had an average “time on page” value of 6:38 seconds—an eternity by online standards.

Plotting a harm reduction map

Click on a location to learn more about the site. Zoom in and out to get a better view.

Pivot has created one of the first harm reduction maps of its kind in Canada, plotting the locations of all Health Canada-approved supervised consumption sites and many of the country’s overdose prevention sites. The content has received over 30,000 impressions so far and has been shared with other health service providers.

Using interactive infographics as a tool for legal advocacy

The innovative yet disruptive forces of the internet are forcing industries to evolve. The news media and brick and mortar retail are two such examples where adaptation isn’t an option, but rather an imperative for survival.

To a lesser degree, how we communicate and engage our community of supporters and the public more generally must also adapt to compete in the marketplace of information, already a crowded space where the strength of content alone isn’t enough. Interactive infographics are just one tool we use to give us the edge and help us achieve our strategic objectives to improve the lives of Canada’s most marginalized people.

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