Legal community rallies around annual ‘Flip Your Wig’ initiative

Posted: 02/27/2015

Flip Your Wig 2015About 100 members of Ontario’s legal community gathered yesterday at Osgoode Hall to support the second year of a popular access to justice initiative, Flip Your Wig.

The annual event, which sees participants don a wig for a day, aims to educate the public, the profession and key justice system stakeholders about access to justice and the work of six Law Society partner organizations:

  • Pro Bono Students Canada
  • Association in Defence of the Wrongly Convicted
  • Ontario Justice Education Network
  • METRAC: Action on Violence
  • Canadian Civil Liberties Association
  • Community Legal Education Ontario

This year’s campaign benefited from the contributions of 18 industry sponsors, including 12 law firms and 150 individual ambassadors.

“Sustained support, broad participation and collaboration are essential if we are to make a real difference in overcoming access to justice challenges,” Law Society Treasurer Janet Minor said.

“I am encouraged that we are seeing that kind of support through initiatives like Flip Your Wig and TAG – The Action Group on Access to Justice.”

Earlier this month at Osgoode Hall, TAG cohosted an event with Social Justice Tribunals Ontario on unbundling and access to justice. The event attracted considerable support including the participation of more than 200 people online.

The ‘Flip Your Wig’ concept plays on the image of the traditional barrister’s wig and the notion that the current lack of access to justice is so troubling that the legal profession is ‘flipping its wig’ in frustration.

In its inaugural year, 2014, about $40,000 was raised by more than 400 individuals at seven law firms. Two corporate sponsors participated as well as five Ontario law schools which ran about 20 awareness campaigns.

“The interest in access to justice is clear and the momentum is building,” Treasurer Minor said.

“There is no question that the challenges are great and the will to solve them is equally great.”