More on this petition:
The shocking truth is that 1 in 5 Canadian women will suffer a form of sexual or physical violence from their intimate partner in their lifetime (Legal Aid Ontario, 2019). Due to the realities of financial abuse and a simple lack of resources, these domestic violence survivors are often the women who have the hardest time affording competent and thorough representation in Ontario’s family court system. Legal Aid Ontario provides potentially life-saving support for these women, helping them to get the lawyers they need to defend themselves from abusers. Here’s the problem: the Conservative Government under Doug Ford cut $133 million dollars, and have planned continued cuts. We started this petition to support the survivors by calling on the provincial government to reverse these cuts. These cuts hinder Legal Aid Ontario’s (LAO) ability to serve people who need legal representation. In 2016/2017, LAO served over 14,000 people in the area of family law who were fleeing violence (Legal Aid Ontario, 2019). Lack of access to these legal resources brings increased marginalization for these women who need support the most in the incredibly difficult process of fleeing a violent relationship. With decreased available resources, there is an increased chance of the need for self-representation, putting them at risk of losing custody or access to shared familial holdings. If you believe in women’s rights to justice while escaping violence, please sign this petition! It is up to us to create change. Reversed cuts for Legal Aid are one of the steps we can all take to ensure a future of equity and freedom from violence!