Who is Afraid of the Big Bad Social Constructionists? Or Shedding Light on the Unpardonable Whiteness of the Canadian Legal Profession

  • Charles C. Smith Lecturer, University of Toronto at Scarborough; Research Associate, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives; former Equity Advisor, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives; former Equity Advisor, Law Society of Upper Canada.

Abstract

This article considers the lack of racial diversity in the legal profession, which is lower than other comparable professions. The author focuses on accessibility to the legal profession and entry into the practice. Historically, access was limited, and sometimes prohibited, by discriminatory social and statutory barriers. Tuition for post-secondary education is now a central barrier that increasingly divides along racial lines, due to the nexus between class and race. Despite the attention given to the problem of lack of racial diversity in the legal field through reports, task forces, surveys, and so forth, there is still much progress needed in order to ensure that the diversity ofthe profession reflects the makeup of the country's population. The author advocates the elimination of barriers to legal education and subsequent entry into the profession through cooperative initiatives between schools, firms, legal associations, and community organizations in order to increase racial equity and diversity within Canada’s legal profession.
Published
2008-06-01
How to Cite
Smith, C. C. (2008). Who is Afraid of the Big Bad Social Constructionists? Or Shedding Light on the Unpardonable Whiteness of the Canadian Legal Profession. Alberta Law Review, 45(5), 55. https://doi.org/10.29173/alr336