Law foundation joins partnership to support justice-related services for Black communities

By John Chunn

Law360 Canada (August 1, 2023, 12:54 PM EDT) -- The Law Foundation of Ontario announced that it is partnering with the Black Opportunity Fund to support its inaugural Criminal Justice granting stream.

According to the foundation’s press release, grants will support Black-led, Black-serving and Black-focused not-for-profits that provide justice-related services to Black communities.

On July 13, the Black Opportunity Fund announced the organizations across Canada that will receive Criminal Justice stream grants of $25,000 or $50,000. Six of these are specifically funded by the foundation. Common among them is the coupling of practical legal help with wraparound supports that explore the underlying causes of crime.

The six foundation-funded projects will offer: practical support services for Black youth and their families navigating the youth justice system; diversion programs for justice-involved Black youth; support to empower Black girls and women to access services and disclose their experiences with sexual violence; and workshops delivered by Black law professionals to inform racialized youth about their legal rights and how to access information and support.

“We’re excited to be partnering with the Black Opportunity Fund and supporting its first Criminal Justice granting steam,” Lisa Cirillo, CEO, The Law Foundation of Ontario, said in the press release. “Enabling equity and justice are key priorities of our grantmaking. Our partnership allowed the Black Opportunity Fund to double the granting dollars available, increasing justice-related services and access to justice for Black communities in Ontario.”