Re-elect Barbara Murchie for BencherMarch 20, 2015
I am running for re-election because I am active, dedicated and bring a sensible and realistic perspective to the table. I am committed to responsible regulation that fulfils our mandate to protect the public interest. My priorities continue to be:
Raising the Bar on Competence
In the past two years, the Law Society has established standards for articling principals and initiated the Law Practice Program (LPP) which must still be assessed. To ensure lawyers have the practical skills they require to serve the public, we need to implement comprehensive exams after articling and the LPP. We must also increase monitoring to ensure post-licensing competence.
Relevant, Effective and Responsive Regulations
Regulation must recognize the challenges of practice. It must also be fair, equitable, transparent and support the diversity of the bar. Your annual dues must be used effectively and efficiently and only to the extent necessary for fulfilling our mandate. I will support practical and reasonable initiatives that (i) ensure competent and honest lawyers in a civil and honourable profession and (ii) facilitate access to justice.
Increasing Support for Soles and Smalls
Access to justice is largely provided by those in smaller firms. The Law Society must continue to support increased legal aid. We must also maximize the value provided by local libraries, deliver local CPD programs and develop more resources designed to assist soles and smalls in the efficient delivery of effective legal services to the public.
Commitment as a Bencher
I have an excellent attendance record and take my duties seriously. As vice-chair of the Professional Development and Competence Committee, my priority has been professional standards. As co-chair of the former Retention of Women working group, I have worked hard on the advancement of women in the profession. I am an adjudicator for the Law Society Tribunal and have authored decisions on misconduct ranging from mortgage fraud to misleading the courts to good character. I am active on the Tribunals, Equity and Access to Justice committees and am a director at LawPro.
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