Posts Tagged ‘black law students association of canada’
Omar Ha-Redeye spoke on a panel about Law and Cyberspace at the 21st Annual Conference of the Black Law Students Association of Canada (BLSAC) in Windsor, Ontario, from February 16-19, 2012.
Omar Ha-Redeye was a judge in the preliminary rounds of the 4th Annual Diversity Moot, held at the 2011 Black Law Students Association of Canada (BLSAC) Conference. Omar Ha-Redeye was the winner of the national competition in 2009.
The competition is sponsored Koskie Minsky LLP.
The Black Law Students Association of Canada (BLSAC) held its 20th Annual National Conference in Toronto, on February 24-27.
Read about some of the hurdles and obstacles of law school in Completing the Circle of Blood for Future Law Students, in the 6th annual Black Law Students Association of Canada (BLSAC) magazine. A text version is also available on Slaw.
On three separate days, Omar Ha-Redeye met with undergraduate students at the University of Western Ontario to talk to them about why they should apply to law school.
On Monday, Sept. 22, 2008 he spoke to the Black Law Students Association.
On Tuesday, it was the African Students Association.
On Wednesday, he saw the Caribbean Students Organization.
The group is a chapter of a larger organization, the Black Law Students Association of Canada (BLSAC), which raises awareness around issues of advocacy relating to minority populations in Canada.
A special thanks to Craig Cameron, Ugbad Farah, and Carly McLarty for making this possible.
Full text of the speech is as follows:
Why ALL of you should apply to law school
My goal today is to convince all of you here today that you should continue your education beyond your undergraduate degree, and that the legal profession is what you should pursue.
What I love best about the law is the ability to challenge and break down stereotypes. For example, Canadians generally overestimate the number of minorities that have committed a crime, which is usually lower than the general population.
However, the 1995 Report of the Commission on Systemic Racism in the Ontario Criminal Justice System stated, it is no secret that “black accused, for example, are more often held without bail”.
The need for advocates to fight this subtle yet pervasive form of discrimination is pressing indeed.
Maybe Criminal law isn’t your thing.
A recent survey indicated that the average salary in Canada was just over $36,000.
The jobs that required a high school education a generation ago now require a bachelor’s degree. The opportunities simply are just not there for recent university graduates without professional and advanced degrees.
Lawyers and legal professionals ranked the highest out of all careers in Canada, with an average of $123,000 for lawyers and $178,053 for judges. Only specialist physicians made slightly more.
But medical schools in Canada are swarmed with applications. There are only 2,400 positions a year across Canada, but there has been a 20% increase in applications recently. Only 0.5% of applicants to McMaster University and 6% at UWO are accepted.
If you have a science background and thought that your only alternative to med school was graduate research, you’re wrong. One of the booming areas of law is intellectual property, and lawyers in this field almost always have a science or engineering background before law school.
That doesn’t mean getting into law school is easy though. You do need a strong undergraduate GPA, and have to worry about this pesky test called the LSAT.
But it’s worth it, unless you are completely content with the status of minority people in Canada. A legal career allows you to pursue professional goals while maintaining an advocacy role within society.
And because the law affects nearly everything we do, there are areas of law that are of interest to everyone.
Fred Rodell, a former professor at Yale, wrote back in 1939, in a book entitled “Woe unto you lawyers,”
It is the lawyers who run our civilization for us – our governments, our business, our private lives. Most legislators are lawyers; they make our laws. Most presidents, governors, commissioners, along with their advisers and brain-trusters are lawyers; they administer our laws. All the judges are lawyers; they interpret and enforce our laws. There is no separation of powers where the lawyers are concerned. There is only a concentration of all government power – in the lawyers. As the schoolboy put it, ours is “a government of lawyers, not of men.”
It is not the businessmen, no matter how big, who run our economic world. Again it is the lawyers, the lawyers who “advise” and direct every time a company is formed, every time a bond or a share of stock is issued, almost every time material is to be bought or goods to be sold, every time a deal is made. The whole elaborate structure of industry and finance is a lawyer-made house. We all live in it, but the lawyers run it.
And in our private lives, we cannot buy a home or rent an apartment, we cannot get married or try to get divorced, we cannot die and leave our property to our children without calling on the lawyers to guide us. To guide us, incidentally, through a maze of confusing gestures and formalities that lawyers have created.
A legal career is not only the smart move in tomorrow’s volatile markets, it’s the right one.
The deadline for law school applications in Ontario is Nov. 3, just over a month from now. You still have time to prepare your application and get it in.
And if you need any help reviewing or planning your application, please feel free to contact me.
The 17th Annual BLSAC National Conference was held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada from February 22-23, 2008.
The theme this year was Looking Forward, Looking Back: Black Canadian Achievements in Law. The conference brought together students, academics, and legal professionals of diverse backgrounds to recognize past achievements and address present concerns of Black Canadians.
Hogg is frequently quoted in defence of the Charter which does not, as some detractors concerned about judicial activism charge, leave judges with the final say on legal issues.
He also responded to critics who have commented on his Charter dialogue theory.
This year featured the inaugural event of the Koskie Minsky LLP Diversity Moot. Another major firm, McCarthy Tétrault LLP, hosted a reception at their Vancouver office for the law students that arrived from across the country. Finally, a gala reception closed off the event, hosted by Fraser Milner Casgrain LLP.
The welcome address was presented by Raphael Tachie (2007/2008 President, Black Law Students’ Association of Canada), followed by an Aboriginal welcome and an opening address by The Honorable Steven L. Point – Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia.
Arleen Huggins of Koskie Minsky LLP, spoke on “A Business Case for diversity.” She said that successful firms are recognizing that their clients are increasingly diverse, and have expectations for firms to reflect the diversity of Canada. It also provides fresh bases for client development.
Omar Ha-Redeye added that diversity also brings a competitive edge to firms adventurous enough to incorporate diversity because it avoids group think and fosters creativity.
Gail Robinson and Kathleen Dechant said in The Academy of Management Executive,
A phenomenal surge in the growth of emerging markets, extensive use of cross-functional, heterogeneous teams to produce creative solutions to business problems, an increased reliance on non-traditional workforce talent – the realities of today’s workplace clearly demonstrate that diversity management has become a critical aspect of operating a business.
A lunch panel discussed whether having minority judges on the bench make a difference. Speakers included Justice Selwyn Romilly of the Supreme Court of British Columbia, Justice Michael H. Tulloch of the Superior Court of Justice (Brampton), and Justice Castor Williams of the Provincial Court (Nova Scotia).
The intersecting barriers of race and gender were then discussed. Often overlooked, even at this conference, is that minority males are typically more disadvantaged than minority females in the workplace.
A number of concurrent sessions also provided resources for law students searching for summer and articling positions, insights for high school students about what legal life was like, and advice for undergrads on how to enter law.
The conference ended on a positive note with the election of a new executive for the upcoming year.