McMillan Makes a Significant Holiday Donation to Improve Access to Justice 

news & knowledge 

December 2019

In the spirit of the season, McMillan has made generous donations to the pro bono organizations operating in our communities, being: Access Pro Bono in B.C., Pro Bono Law in Alberta, Pro Bono Law Ontario (PBLO) and Justice Pro Bono in Québec.

“We are proud to focus this year’s giving on these great organizations that provide a voice for the disadvantaged and promote the public interest in the communities in which we work,” said Margaret McNee, National Pro Bono Partner. “This donation is in addition to other pro bono-related gifts made throughout the year, and to the more than $600,000 in pro bono legal services provided by our lawyers in 2019 alone.”

A part of the firm’s long history of giving, McMillan’s commitment to advancing access to justice benefits large, not-for-profit organizations as well as individuals who cannot afford legal services.

The McMillan Law Help Ontario Program, run through PBLO, continued to thrive in 2019. The program provides volunteer McMillan lawyers to both the Superior and Small Claims Courts in Toronto Law Help Ontario offices and to the PBLO Hotline. As duty counsel, the volunteer lawyers provide a range of services to individuals who cannot afford legal representation. The program provides practical, real-time support to low-income individuals who otherwise would not have access to legal assistance. McMillan lawyers have acted and continue to act as Civil Claims Duty Counsel in the Provincial Court of Alberta, Civil Division (Calgary). Through our volunteer efforts, we meet with everyday people involved in the civil small claims process and provide them with much needed legal advice. Claims include a wide variety of legal issues related to debt, personal injury, landlord and tenant matters and employment.

For the past 10 years, McMillan has worked in partnership with the Maytree Foundation – a private organization that promotes equity and prosperity – to provide pro bono services to Maytree’s network of contacts in the local, not-for-profit community. We deliver these services by:

• Providing not-for-profit agencies in the Maytree Leadership Network with a guaranteed amount of pro bono services annually through our pro bono certificate programs.

• Creating and presenting legal seminars for Maytree’s client groups on relevant legal issues. These sessions are videotaped and posted on Maytree’s website as a continuing resource for those in the Maytree network.

The legal profession enjoys a unique role in the community. Lawyers and other firm members have the skills and ability to provide legal services to the disadvantaged and to promote the public interest in ways that no other profession can. It is a responsibility we honour at McMillan.