Public legal education (PLE) refers to activities that empower people to address their own legal matters as well as broader social justice issues. Legal literacy is increasingly seen essential to both access to justice and democratic government. Public legal education is also referred to as community legal education (CLE), law-related education (LRE), legal literacy, legal capability, and legal empowerment.
Public legal education (PLE) emerged in Canada during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Since then hundreds of individuals and organizations have been empowering Canadians to engage in law-related activities of interest to them. These efforts have been accompanied by research and reflection as the PLE community has worked to ground its practice in theory and to test that theory in practice.
Similar activities are also underway in Australia, Bangladesh, Nigeria, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America, to name only a handful of countries.
Purpose of PLECanada
The purpose of this site is to encourage the development of a community of practice in public legal education (by whatever name). The site captures experiences and insights, shares stories and resources, and otherwise helps us to improve how we think about and respond to challenges in this work.
Join the PLE community
This site is meant to be a collective effort. I will curate it as much as time allows – posting thoughts, documents, and other resources that I encounter. I welcome any contributions you would like to make. By interacting with each other, we will create a body of knowledge and practices that will increase the impact of our individual and collective efforts.
For more information on how to become an active participant on this site or to send me your comments, contact me at email@example.com.
Wishing you all the very best in your work,
Professor Lois Gander, Q.C. Faculty of Extension, University of Alberta December 12, 2017