About Us

CELA is a specialty legal clinic within the Ontario-wide network of clinics funded by Legal Aid Ontario. We provide free legal services to people and groups across Ontario that qualify for legal aid.

We work to protect human health and our environment by seeking justice for those harmed by pollution and by working to change policies to prevent such problems in the first place.  As a Legal Aid Clinic our top priority is to represent low income individuals and communities and to speak out for those with less influence and who receive less of a say in decision-making.

Through landmark legal cases CELA has helped shape government and industry approaches to pollution and other environmental threats and has forced polluters to clean up their act. Our Public Legal Education efforts help to explain the law and citizen environmental rights in Ontario.

CELA has been part of shaping innovative collaborations to improve sustainability and human health including the Low Income Energy Network, Green Prosperity, RentSafe, the Canadian Partnership for Children’s Health and Environment, the Great Lakes Network, and many more.

CELA is also part of the Co-operative of Specialty Community Legal Clinics of Ontario Inc. The Co-operative includes 8 independent Specialty Community Legal Clinics and the Association of Community Legal Clinics of Ontario. We share space and resources so that we can:

• Raise a collective voice for social justice
• Enhance impact through collaboration
• Offer more effective and innovative client services
• Promote information exchange and creativity
• Facilitate additional training opportunities
• Increase research capacity
• Improve response to province-wide mandates
• Enable collective investment in improved IT
• Increase administrative efficiency
• Reduce overall costs