Quebec Legal (QL) is a non-profit, volunteer organized legal collective, which was formed prior to the Summit of the Americas protest in Québec City, April 2001. Our organization is comprised of law students and other volunteers who are working together with a team of lawyers. Our initial goal was to help ensure that access to all the necessary legal information before the demonstrations was available to any and everybody, and that all those arrested had access to proper legal representation if required. QL believes that good legal representation is especially necessary when the arrests are made in politically subversive contexts, such as the protests in Québec City, because the State, in order to reduce dissent, will often impose harsh penalties on the accused. While there may be some of the accused that can afford proper legal representation, it is far from the majority.
Currently, Québec Legal is working in cooperation with the team of lawyers to insure that all those arrested during the Summit receive proper representation. QL consists of volunteer paralegals working closely with the lawyers, compiling dossiers on the arrested - whose number total over 150 cases. Other volunteers are working to compile witness reports, and manage the administrative logistics of Québec Legal. Also, QL is working hard to provide information, and facilitate communication among those arrested to ensure that they do not go through the process in isolation from one another.
While we are working within the judicial system to insure that peoples rights are respected, we are also working from outside by applying pressure on government and by ensuring that the public is informed with respect to the proceedings.
This, however, is a costly endeavor. Being that the operation is volunteer based, we rely on the generosity of concerned donors to finance our effort. This is where you can help us:
In order to insure the defense of the accused we implore you to contribute as much as you can to the defense fund for the accused of the Summit of the Americas.
We adamantly believe that the majority of those arrested in Québec were taken as political prisoners. As such, it is imperative to garner support and create a base from which to build strength for the movement of social justice, and to resist state attempts at criminalizing dissent. Please help us with this very important cause.
Thank you for your consideration.
Please make out cheques to "Quebec Legal Defence" and mail to the address below:
Quebec Legal Defence
420 Laurier Avenue East