McCarthy Tétrault understands that exercising our corporate responsibility involves looking beyond the walls of our offices to deepen our commitment to our local communities. Giving back to our communities is not only a business imperative that drives us to think better, do better and be better, it is the right thing to do.
Working with McCarthy Tétrault isn’t just about solving legal problems or improving business outcomes, it’s about having a partner who eagerly embraces the ideals and values that matter to your business, including giving back to the communities that elevate and ensure your continued success.
When founded in 1997, the McCarthy Tétrault Foundation was first-of-its-kind in Canada, and has remained the cornerstone of our charitable activities. Governed by a board of directors that meets monthly, the Foundation supports all aspects of our communities, from hospitals to local artists, cultural organizations, to support networks and law schools.
Since it’s inception the McCarthy Tétrault Foundation has invested more than $18 million in non-profit organizations, local programs and initiatives that improve the lives of everyday Canadians.
In another first-of-its-kind in the legal profession, McCarthy Tétrault kicked of Inclusion Now with a pledge of $5 million dollars over five years to United Way Centraide.
Our gift is directed to agencies and programs in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Montréal and Québec City that are having the greatest impact in supporting five equity-seeking groups:
- Indigenous peoples,
- Newcomers to Canada,
- Members of LGBTQ2S communities, and
- People with disabilities.
We know that individuals from these communities face barriers to full participation in Canadian society, and that these barriers are further amplified when people are living in poverty.
We are following up our financial gift to United Way Centraide with the investment of our time, mobilizing and leveraging the full range of our resources to support these agencies and communities. This includes the delivery of pro bono services to the agencies or their clients, contributions to governance, and volunteer efforts, depending on the need. Our goal is to engage members of the firm to contribute in any way that they can. Making a year-round investment in the agencies and communities we have identified allows us to enhance and accelerate the impact of our gift, and build meaningful relationships in the community.
We have some of the brightest legal minds in Canada at McCarthy Tétrault and putting that expertise to work in pro bono matters means we can do what we do best for the individuals and communities that need it most. In the last fifteen years, we have delivered more than 125,000 hours of pro bono services, valued in excess of $50 million, to social justice issues throughout Canada. This puts our lawyers on the ground in the communities they come from to build a healthier and more vibrant Canada.
Alongside the hundreds of individual pro bono matters we work on each year, McCarthy Tétrault partners with Lawyers Without Borders to support international legal efforts, and closer to home, we are the National Law Firm Partner for Pro Bono Students Canada. We are also tremendously proud of our work on the Unaccompanied Minors Project, a McCarthy Tétrault initiative that pairs our lawyers with children who arrive alone at Toronto’s international airport to be their designated representative in refugee claims.
Our partnership with LEAP | Pecault Centre for Social Impact allows us to provide breakthrough social ventures with the legal foundation they need to scale across Canada.
Indigenous Human Rights Clinic
In partnership with Pro Bono Students Canada, the Ontario Federation of Indigenous Friendship Centres, and the Ontario and Canadian Human Rights Commissions, McCarthy Tétrault contributed to the development of a new human rights clinic. Our lawyers provide culturally sensitive legal services to Indigenous clients, representing them at mediations and tribunals. This program is the recipient of the prestigious 2019 Emil Gumpert Award from the American College of Trial Lawyers.
McCarthy Tétrault is also dedicated to the vibrant arts scenes in the cities where our offices are located. We provide pro bono services to ArtScape, a non-profit organization devoted to enhancing creativity in communities. Our lawyers regularly assist in negotiations for the lease of land and other agreements to showcase Canadian talent. We have also been involved in the 12-year project to transform Regent Park with new streets, parks and community services by assisting with right of return agreements for residents, labour and employment matters, contracts and a small business incubator.