Clinic System Strategic Plan


Clinics have collectively developed a Strategic Plan for Ontario’s Community Legal Clinic system.  This helps us collectively work together to ensure the highest quality and most effective services are provided by clinics to their communities.

The Clinic system with support from the ACLCO, the Law Foundation and the Ontario Trilium Foundation completed a multi-year Strategic Plan for Ontario’s Community Legal Clinic system in 2013.  The ACLCO continues to provide systemic leadership to pursuing that plan that includes a commitment to modernize service delivery, ensure systemic leadership, and maximize the impact of the available funding, while preserving the core value of responsiveness to the priorities set by the highly diverse communities that have been so ably served by this model of service delivery for some 40 years.

“Community legal clinics have come together to develop a plan that ensures the highest quality and most effective services possible at a time when public resources are shrinking,” said Trudy McCormick, co-chair of the ACLCO. “Innovation in service delivery is imperative, and our strategic plan harmonizes innovation with an expansion of holistic, cost-effective, community-driven legal services that serve vulnerable community members.”

The strategic plan was developed through an extensive consultation process that included clinic boards and staff, community partners, and the justice sector. The plan was overwhelmingly endorsed by Ontario’s community legal clinics.

The Strategic Plan has four strategic directions:

  • Expand Client Access to Poverty Law Services: Collaborating to expand client and community access to poverty law services to address challenges such as changing demographics and the racialization of poverty, evolving service needs, and limited resources.
  • Enhance Capacity for Systemic Work: Strengthening our capacity to do preventive and systemic poverty law work – including community development, law reform, test cases, and public legal education – to achieve the greatest positive impact for our client communities.
  • Strengthen Community Connections: Increasing clinic accountability to the clients and communities we serve and pursue a range of ways for clinics to be an integral part of community efforts to meet the needs of persons living in poverty.
  • Enhance System-Wide Coordination and Support: Strengthening our capacity for provincial coordination and support to enable clinics collectively to provide the highest quality service and to ensure the clinic system is accountable for the services it provides with public funds.