This week, SSMU members are being asked to renew the McGill Legal Information Clinic’s (MLIC) $3.25 fee. MLIC’s services are invaluable. Most people do not have to think about the legal system until they find themselves in trouble, at which point they realize just how difficult it can be.
Many McGill students come from outside Quebec, and even those born and raised here are likely unfamiliar with the scope of their legal rights. Moreover, as McGill students, we are all subject to University rules and regulations that, for the most part, elude us.
Imagine being forced to navigate the judicial system or the University’s complex bureaucracy on your own. This could cost lots of money and yield disastrous results.
For 30 years, MLIC has helped students avoid this scenario. Staffed by volunteers from the Faculty of Law, MLIC acts as a legal first aid service, explaining your rights and outlining your options free of charge. They also participate in outreach programs, and act as a community legal service that grants access to legal information to those in the wider Montreal community who could otherwise not afford it. Similarly, Student Advocacy provides students facing disciplinary measures with representatives that know the University’s rules inside out. If you find yourself in trouble with the administration, you will not have to face it alone. Together these volunteers regularly provide information that would otherwise cost thousands of dollars. Their work impacts people’s lives on a daily basis.
We are all accountable to rules whether we know them or not. By guiding anxious clients through the crucial stages of their legal or regulatory problems, MLIC and Student Advocacy provide a crucial service to thousands of people every year. Please continue to support these organizations. Vote yes in this week’s referendum.
Stefan SzpajdaLaw IIIFormer MLIC VolunteerFormer