Canadian Lawyer

June 2020

The most widely read magazine for Canadian lawyers

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Page 6 of 51 5 The conference and 2019 agreements represent the emergence by the Métis from the "legal lacuna" in which they have existed since confederation, says Métis-rights lawyer Jason Madden, a speaker at the conference. "As [then] chief justice [Antonio] Lamer said in the Delgamuukw case 20 years ago, 'Let's face it, we're all here to stay.' The discus- sion needs to be: How do we reconcile our respective jurisdictions and rights within Canada?" Madden says. "So, I think the conference is quite a milestone for Métis in particular because this has been such a long time coming." Madden, co-managing partner of Pape Salter Teillet LLP in Toronto, says three Supreme Court decisions, which he detailed in a 2018 opinion column for Canadian Lawyer, paved the way for the 2019 agreements. The 2003 Supreme Court of Canada deci- sion R. v. Powley, 2003 SCC 43 confirmed that Métis rights were protected as existing Aboriginal rights, within the meaning of s. 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, which states: "The existing aboriginal and treaty rights of the aboriginal peoples of Canada are hereby recognized and affirmed." The 2013 SCC case Manitoba Metis Federation Inc. v. Canada confirmed that by not following through on their promise of providing 1.4 million acres of land to the Manitoba Métis under their 1869/1870 deal, Canada had breached the honour of the Crown. And, in 2016, the SCC confirmed the Métis are "Indians" as defined under s. 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867, in Daniels v. Canada. Section 91(24) grants Parliament "exclusive legislative authority" over "Indians, and Lands reserved for the Indians." "This means that Canada has always had constitutional jurisdiction to establish nation- to-nation, government-to-government rela- tionships with the Métis in the same way as it has with First Nations and Inuit," Madden wrote. Manitoba's new bar admissions program Company: Law Society of Manitoba Years in the industry: Called to bar in 1983 Private practice until 1998 Positive impact of COVID COVID has given us the opportunity to change the way we work and engage with others Negative impact of COVID Working from home and missing the opportunity to work with people Kristin Dangerfield CEO The prairie province's new bar admissions program will see its first full cohort of students in June. Kristin Dangerfield, CEO of the Law Society of Manitoba, spoke with Canadian Lawyer about its debut. Why were these changes to the bar admissions process made? Historically, the western provinces had partnered in delivering a program called [the Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education]. We recognized over the last number of years that there was a need to update that program with the changes in online education and adult education. We ran two pilot projects over the course of the last year. The first program started in Alberta in the fall, and then in Manitoba, we started at the end of January. The program is a nine-month program and it consists of four distinct phases. The intent of the program was that it would always be delivered in conjunction with students who are taking their articles at the same time. There are foundation modules that can be taken prior to a student commencing their articles. With the advent of COVID, and recognizing the financial constraints on law firms and the concerns that various law societies among the PREP jurisdictions had about whether firms were going to be able to continue to offer positions, the decision was made that, for this year, on a pilot basis only, students would be permitted to take the PREP program without having articles. The other change . . . was to provide for abridgements of articles so that students could receive credit for up to 16 weeks of articles. There's much more flexibility . . . to ensure that students get the full opportunity to have their articles, take the PREP program and be called at the time that they would have anticipated being called. What kind of feedback have you received? How is it working out? It's been very good. We have a pilot project running in Manitoba, and Alberta is a number of months ahead of our program. We're working with that feedback to incorporate revisions and changes to adjust for issues that have been identified in the pilot. It was intended to be a program that would provide both online learning but also face-to- face learning as well. Because of COVID, CPLED is working very hard to develop some online programming that will likely have to replace those face-to-face modules for this year. What about the old system indicated a need for change? That program had been developed around 2005 . . . when online learning really looked much different . . . So, there was a recognition that there were some skills in terms of communications and interviewing and application of judgment . . . that we thought could be incorporated into the program in a more substantial way. . . Practice management, for example, wasn't really something that was talked about in the same way 15-20 years ago, but there's now a recognition that lawyers really need the skills . . . to be able to manage their practices to communicate with clients to essentially run a business. "This is a legitimization of nationhood. It's full participation." Marilyn Poitras, Wiyasiwewin Mikiwahp Native Law Centre Q&A

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