Photo: Linda Pim
As a legal aid clinic dedicated to environmental equity, justice, and health, CELA offers a unique articling experience, focusing on administrative and environmental law. The articling student deals directly with individuals seeking legal information, which provides valuable practice in dealing with the public and potential clients. The articling student also gains background with respect to the process of developing policy as part of CELA’s law reform activities. CELA values, but does not require, language capacities in addition to English, as well as lived experience relevant to environmental legal needs of equity-seeking groups. For example, CELA values persons with lived experience in local and Indigenous knowledge systems, as well as experience working with racialized, vulnerable and diverse communities who CELA serves.
Case Work, Legal Research and Litigation
Case work activities include legal research, writing memos and draft opinion letters, drafting motion records, affidavits and factums, meeting with clients, attending motions court, assisting lawyers at discoveries and hearings, and conducting corporate and title searches.
Legal Analysis and Law Reform
Students are given the opportunity to participate in researching and writing articles, position papers, and submissions under the supervision of CELA staff. There are also opportunities to appear before standing committees, city councils or commissions, and to give presentations at conferences.
Most legal inquiries from the public are initially directed to the articling student who is responsible for researching the issue and providing an answer in consultation with one of the lawyers. Students may also write for CELA’s communications materials, give interviews, or deliver talks to school and community groups.
Working at CELA
The articling student is an integral and important member of the team. Work is assigned and monitored primarily by staff lawyers. As part of a small team, articling at CELA provides an excellent hands-on learning environment, in a workplace that is collegial and cooperative. Students receive a high degree of responsibility and, as such, it is important that the student be a self‐starter and be comfortable working independently.
Applying to CELA
CELA hires one articling student each year. Click here to view our posting for a 2024-25 Articling Student.
Please submit your application package by Friday, June 30, 2023 at 5:00 pm EST to:
Canadian Environmental Law Association
Attn.: Tracy Tucker, Office Manager