Alberta Law Libraries (ALL) promote informed engagement with the law, encouraging broad access to justice. ALL’s mission of providing access to the Law supports the Access to Justice initiatives in the province.
The core values of ALL are Inclusion, Collaboration, Innovation, Accessibility, and Service Excellence. For example, the comprehensive collection of primary and secondary legal sources is open to lawyers, law students, judiciary, and the public. Additionally, copies of full text works may be requested as discussed in Access to the Law. Another example of access is the remote access to some legal databases, like Westlaw Canada, for residents of Alberta. Public accounts are available for a three-month term on request, however print books do not circulate to the public (scanning and photocopiers are available to public users who visit our locations).
Community outreach and engagement activities by ALL promote Access to Justice. Currently ALL hosts a pro bono legal clinic within the Edmonton branch on Wednesday mornings. The blog ‘Stay Current’ features case news, legislative news, and Alberta Law Libraries News, such as:
Filling in forms to print for Alberta Courts, so essential for self-represented litigants, is supported with public access to computers and self-service printing. ALL recommends searching the Legal Research Guides and Navigating Legal Information for help, and recently published an article on accessing forms in LawNow magazine.
ALL locations are not just in Calgary and Edmonton, but in many locations across the province. Feel free to visit during opening hours and consult with the front desk staff. On average, we answer 300-400 questions a week from members of the public. You can email your questions using the Ask a Law Librarian service. Alternatively, call the branch closest to you. Tours and training are available too.
In conclusion, access to justice remains as Lord Mansfield exclaimed in the 1770s: ALL FIAT JUSTITIA, RUAT COELUM or "Let justice be done though the heavens fall.” Legal research and law sources are pillars in that social goal.
Note: Alberta Law Libraries’ staff are not lawyers and cannot give legal advice.