Queen's Law

Faculty of Law
Faculty of Law

Innovative youth leadership program builds positive connections between youth and the justice system   

(May 18, 2018)

Hannah Claus showcases her proposal, which consists of wampum belts made of translucent purple coloured and frosted clear acrylic sheets and hung vertically from the ceiling.
"We look forward to bringing these kids to Queen’s and showing them that they have a connection to not just the Faculty of Law, but the justice system generally, says Assistant Dean Heather Cole (fifth left)

Queen’s Law is opening its doors this summer to young people in Kingston. Partnering with the Kingston Police, the Boys and Girls Club, and the City of Kingston, the law school will provide a positive connection to the justice system.

With the support of the Queen’s Law and the Boys and Girls Club, a few months ago the Kingston Police applied for funding from the Ontario Proceeds of Crime Front-Line Policing Grant for a youth summer camp, an idea formed from collaborative discussions among the three organizations. 

“I am pleased to relay that we were successful in securing $82,320 from the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services for a two year project in partnership with Queen’s University Faculty of Law and the Boys and Girls Club of Kingston & Area,” announced Chief Gilles Larochelle. “This two-year project will enable over 400 young people from our community to attend a weeklong summer camp free of charge, thereby expanding accessibility to interesting and invigorating summer activities for our youth. This project is another perfect example of successful collaboration among our community partners.”  

The Law and Leadership Summer Camp will demystify the law for participants, giving them an opportunity to learn alongside law students and other members of the legal sector about the place of law in our society and its capacity to affect change for the better. 

“We want to have an opportunity to reach young people early and show them that lawyers, police, judges and other legal professionals were kids once too,” explains Assistant Dean of Students, Heather Cole, who helped develop the camp. “We chose this profession because of a passion we have for the law and what it can do. We want to ignite that same passion with the youth that take part in our program. Coming to the law school and having the opportunity to learn about the law might break down some of the misconceptions they have about the legal system and perhaps, pave the way for them to choose a career in law.” 

“We know that the justice system can be a big unknown place for people in our community,” says Boys and Girls Club of Kingston & Area Executive Director, Harold Parsons. “When we heard that Queen’s Law wanted to help us build bridges between police and the communities we serve, with the funding opportunity through the Kingston Police and the Government of Ontario, we jumped right in. We look forward to bringing these kids to Queen’s and showing them that they have a connection to not just the Faculty of Law, but the justice system generally – that they can make the kind of the community they want to live in.”

Thanks to the funding from the Government of Ontario and additional support from all involved partners, this Law and Leadership Camp targeting 9–12 year-olds will be offered at no cost to participants.

The camp kicks off July 3 at The Rideau Heights Community Centre and will run eight weeks of the Summer break.