As of April 1, 2023, Legal Aid will be forwarding child protection certificates only to lawyers on the panel. Lawyers have to apply to be on the panel. The application form is pretty comprehensive including needing to provide 2 certificates. I'm glad they are being more rigorous even if I hate more paperwork. Deadline for the application is January 16, 2023.
People with no references (those who can speak about my talents and expertise in child welfare), such as myself, will actually get into issues. Unfortunately, I only received two files from LAA. I learned the method by attending court and contacting a few lawyers who generally respond. In this circumstance, I feel a bit betrayed.
I could think of one lawyer with whom I had one file, but he is not obliged to provide a reference. And why would I expect that he will give me a reference? In many circumstances, our principal cannot provide a reference because they have never dealt with a child welfare file.
"Part 4: References Please provide up to two references who can comment on your interest, aptitude, and experience in the areas mentioned above. If you name any references, LAA may contact them for their confidential opinion about your competencies and your suitability for this panel. LAA may choose not to contact your references."
Regarding the LAA's demand for a mentor, I found that few individuals bothered to reply to a technical question. Most mentors with whom I was connected expressly state that they are unable to respond to any serious questions. Unapologetically, some mentors only serve as mentors for the sake of earning a name. They refuse to respond to any questions OR perhaps they might have particular problems with me and share any knowledge or information. It's far better if you call a practice advisor for your issue. nnThen those select few who respond to you, but you feel awful for them since they have their demanding schedules and are still responding to you.
Regarding the 6 hours of CPD, folks like me are wondering how they would create programs that I have never seen. I was unable to locate any programs. The only thing that sprang to me was attending the first Tuesday at noon meetings of the CBA's Child & Youth Law (South) Section. However, asking questions without providing any insight is a shifting target. Please let me know if any of the local seniors (Edmonton Region) are aware of any valuable programs.
Last but not least, why do I have to describe myself as the most sympathetic person on the planet to convince this panel that my résumé is deserving of consideration when I know many of my colleagues have years of experience and are really the reason for the changes to the judicial system? I'll never match up to the goodness of those folks.
That certainly indicates I'll never be one of those people who get a certificate. Why should I bother sending my résumé and application?