April 29, 2014
U of O courtroom offer to the Immigration and Refugee Board
The University Of Ottawa Faculty Of Law Department has offered use of a new courtroom to the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). The pilot project would allow the IRB to use the room at no cost for claimants who were unable to travel to Montreal.
This offer was prompted by the federal budget cuts in 2012, which closes the Ottawa hearings Office by mid May 2014. The university is offering the courtroom for use of hearings involving vulnerable refugees and immigrants.
In 2012 the Ottawa hearings office held 789 refugee hearings, appeals on immigration applications, admissibility hearings, and detention reviews. It also held 643 hearings in the first nine months of 2013.
The courtroom is adjoined to a classroom behind a glass wall, where law students can watch cases, and discuss proceedings with their professors which enables a “real life” learning environment.
The courtroom has already been used by The Ontario Court of Justice, the Ontario Court of Appeal, and the Federal Court of Canada.