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Ontario aims to boost judicial diversity by inviting applicants to self-identify

File photo of a judge's gavel. GETTY IMAGES/Joe Raedle

Ontario is making changes to its judicial applications to try to achieve greater diversity on the provincial bench.

The application form is being updated to include an option to self-identify as Indigenous, LGBTQ2+, belonging to a racialized community or other ethnic or cultural group, having a disability, or by gender.

The same change is being made for justice of the peace applicants.

Attorney General Yasir Naqvi announced that Ontario will also begin collecting race-based data on applicants and new appointments.

As well, the judicial appointments advisory committee will also be increasing its outreach to law associations and students to reach a more diverse audience.

Naqvi says Ontario’s diversity should be reflected in its judiciary, in order to benefit the communities it serves.