Management Response and Action Plan

Evaluation of the Legal Aid Program

Policy Sector Legal Aid Directorate (LAD)

Conclusions Recommendations Management Response Action Plan Responsible Manager (Title) Planned Completion Date
The 2012 Legal Aid Program evaluation noted that the Program would benefit from improved performance measures that are agreed to by the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Permanent Working Group on Legal Aid (PWG) and the Legal Aid Directorate (LAD) and that are consistently tracked. This remains an area for improvement for the Program. Although the current evaluation attempted to provide additional evidence of effectiveness through case studies and interviews with clients, the Program would benefit from outcomes that are more clearly defined and have performance measures that are being consistently recorded and tracked. The LAD (including the representative from PID responsible for AJAs), in consultation with the PWG, identify appropriate outcomes, performance measures and data sources to support an assessment of the impact, efficiency and economy of the Program. This will help to ensure that the required data is available to support future program evaluations.

Agreed. The LAD acknowledges that revisions to its current results and delivery strategy are necessary to ensure that relevant outcomes, performance measures and data sources are identified to support program evaluation and policy and program decision making.

The LAD is committed to working with the PWG to develop relevant outcomes, performance measures and data sources to support future evaluation activities.

The LAD will schedule and hold PWG meetings to discuss and develop revised performance measurement outcomes and data sources to better support Program results and delivery.

The LAD will revise the Program’s results and delivery strategy to reflect the revised performance measures, outcomes and data sources that have been agreed to by the PWG.

The LAD will schedule and hold PWG meetings to discuss and develop revised performance measurement outcomes and data sources to better support Program results and delivery. The LAD will revise the Program’s results and delivery strategy to reflect the revised performance measures, outcomes and data sources that have been agreed to by the PWG. The LAD will hold regular discussions with the Evaluation Division to ensure that the Program’s performance measurement framework aligns with future Program evaluation needs.

Director, Legal Aid Directorate March 2018
The PWG’s mandate includes activities that enhance the capacity of legal aid by negotiating cost-sharing agreements, but also serving as a resource to the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Deputy Ministers Responsible for Justice and Public Safety on identified priority areas and providing a forum for policy and legal discussions among its members on topics relevant to legal aid. In the last two evaluation cycles, the PWG is considered to have had a significant focus on reviewing the contribution agreements and funding formulae for legal aid and, as a result, its mandate was not entirely fulfilled. The evaluation found that the PWG is beginning to realign its focus toward facilitating discussion to other legal aid program and policy matters, such as performance measurement and information sharing. Key informants generally supported these new directions of the PWG. They offered other suggestions that they thought would help enhance the capacity of legal aid, including funding more research and exploring issues related to the impact of legislative changes on legal aid. The LAD consider how best to align the PWG’s activities with its mandate and facilitate coordination, collaboration, and sharing of information on operational and policy issues that affect legal aid.

Agreed. The LAD will continue to work with the PWG to ensure that opportunities are identified to discuss issues of mutual interest which may impact legal aid, share best practices and discuss research ideas. It is expected that the LAD, in collaboration with the PWG, will identify a short list of research ideas to focus on over the next five-year period.

The Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics (CCJS) and the LAD have been collaborating with the PWG on the re-design of the national Legal Aid Survey. Legal aid representatives of the PWG have been instrumental in the re-design of the Survey.

The LAD has had initial discussions with the PWG on revisions to the Final Claim document. A sub-committee was established and will be engaged to provide further input.

The LAD will schedule follow-up meetings with the PWG to discuss performance measures, outcomes and data sources in greater detail, and will identify research priorities that will better support policy and program development and future Program evaluations.

The LAD will also engage the Research and Statistics Division and the Evaluation Division to ensure that proposed research is relevant, feasible in terms of time and cost, and that it supports departmental requirements.

The LAD, along with the CCJS, will continue to collaborate with the PWG on the re-design of the national Legal aid survey.

The LAD will continue to work with a sub-committee of the PWG to revise the Final Claim Package that will be used for next five-year agreement period.

Director, Legal Aid Directorate

March 2017

CCJS re-design of the national Legal aid survey to be completed by December 2017

July 2017

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