As part of its mandate to protect the public interest, the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society is engaged in access to justice issues across Nova Scotia, through its Equity Program and enhanced consultation with other key players in the administration of justice.
Administration of Justice is one of two main priorities guiding the Society’s activities, as set out in the Strategic Plan: “NSBS works to improve the administration of justice and access to the justice system for all Nova Scotians.”
The Society’s long-standing commitment to improving justice is also entrenched in section 4 of the Legal Profession Act:
4(1) The purpose of the Society is to uphold and protect the public interest in the practice of law.
(2) In pursuing its purpose, the Society shall …
(d) seek to improve the administration of justice in the Province by
(i) regularly consulting with organizations and communities in the Province having an interest in the Society’s purpose, including, but not limited to, organizations and communities reflecting the economic, ethnic, racial, sexual and linguistic diversity of the Province, and
(ii) engaging in such other relevant activities as approved by Council.
The Society is building on the work of its Equity Program, established in 1994 to address barriers and gaps and ensure that both law and the practice of law reflect the province’s diverse population. Improving the availability of an affordable, accessible and user-friendly justice system is a high priority; Council prescribes the extent of the Society’s role, given the core mandate of regulation, by establishing strategic objectives that are both fiscally responsible and serve the public interest.