You’re Right! It’s the Law! (youth issues)

Project Name

You’re Right! It’s the Law!

Project Partners

Lead Agency: Justice for Children and Youth (JFCY)
Partners: Human Rights Legal Support Centre, Thunder Bay Multicultural Youth Council, Urban Aboriginal Strategy (Thunder Bay) and Thunder Bay Native Friendship Centre
Consulting Partners: Kinna-aweya Legal Clinic (Thunder Bay)

Project Summary

This project will provide training to youth workers and other community workers involved with primarily Aboriginal young people in the Thunder Bay area and from the surrounding communities, on youth criminal justice issues. The project is using an innovative approach of involving young people themselves in the project as much as possible; in identifying topics for training, training strategies etc.

Legal Topics for Training

Legal education relating to issues concerning youth, Youth Criminal Justice Act, education law and human rights.

Target Audience

Youth workers who serve youth in rural and remote communities in the Thunder Bay area and Aboriginal youth.

Key Activities

  • Using a youth engagement model, a lawyer, law student and high school student will work together to create materials and present workshops to train youth workers on legal issues affecting youth in the Thunder Bay area
  • The planning phase of the project includes a law student and high school student scanning the internet to contact other youth in order to identify key issues for young people with respect to legal information and areas for training
  • A youth advisory committee in Thunder Bay will be created to identify specific areas of law on which to focus and to facilitate the project (first visit will be made to Thunder Bay)
  • The youth advisory committee will be comprised of a Project Director (part-time lawyer at Justice for Children and Youth), a Project Coordinator (part-time law student), a Project Assistant (part-time high school student) and two Youth Facilitators from Thunder Bay (who will be paid an honorarium)
  • The training project will carry out at least six workshops in the Thunder Bay area. The project duration is May 1, 2013until April 30, 2014. Two visits will be made to Thunder Bay to carry out the workshops
  • Internet and social networking resources will be used to gather and deliver information.

Need for Training

Youth living in northern communities including First Nations reserves, face many unique challenges as they attempt to learn how to live and work as young adults in white mainstream society. They face many legal issues including how to understand the criminal justice system, the educational system and how to be able to exercise their human rights. This project will enable JFCY to work with community workers to deliver in–depth legal education that is relevant and accessible to youth in the North.

Innovative Approach

  • This project is innovative in its direct involvement of youth in project and curriculum development as well as identifying the most relevant training strategies. Young people will be engaged in the project through the existing youth advisory committee; JFCY Connecting Project staff; youth workers and youth facilitators from Thunder Bay
  • Web-based training materials, video conferencing, social networking sites (blogs, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube) in addition to face to face training workshops will all be used in delivering the training
  • It is anticipated that the technology used for the training will be one of the reasons that youth workers will become interested and actively engaged in the project.