LAO kicks off multi-year strategy to support clients with mental illness

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is collaborating with experts in both the mental health and justice systems in the development of its new multi-year strategy to improve and expand legal aid services for clients with mental illness.

Improving services is a priority of LAO’s Board, which recently approved the strategy. With the help of experts, LAO will develop community-based and outreach-based services. The goal is for LAO to strengthen the capacity of other service providers, including clinics and private lawyers, in proactively supporting clients’ legal needs through early access and holistic practice models.

“Any access point needs to be the best access point when rights and empowerment are at issue,” says Ryan Fritsch, policy counsel leading development of the strategy.

Over the next couple of months, LAO will:

  • create a new community advisory committee, comprised of experts currently working in the field of mental health, to provide advice on the development of tailored services, partnership opportunities and projects; further details will be announced by the end of May 2013
  • release a province-wide consultation paper in July 2013



Josephine Li
Communications advisor
Phone: 416-979-2352 ext. 6015