AB lawyers vote to keep mandatory Indigenous cultural competency course

Alberta lawyers have voted to reject a resolution that would eliminate a mandatory Indigenous cultural competency course. Over 2,500 members of the Law Society of Alberta voted against the motion during a meeting early this week. The vote was held in response to a petition from 51 lawyers who were opposed to a mandatory five-part course called The Path, which teaches Indigenous culture and history in the context of the justice system. Lawyers who do not complete the course are suspended from practicing law in the province. “Sometimes when we learn about things that are foreign to us, it makes us feel uncomfortable,” said University of Alberta Wahkohtowin Law and Governance Lodge Legal Director Koren Lightning-Earle. “I think people really need to take some time and explore why they feel that way. And really get to the deep root about why are they putting their names to the petition?”

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