Department of Justice Canada

Department of Justice Canada

September 11, 2014 09:40 ET

Minister MacKay Marks Canada's National Day of Service

Canadians Encouraged to Support Their Communities Through Volunteer Activities and Charitable Donations

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Sept. 11, 2014) - Department of Justice Canada

Today, Justice Minister Peter MacKay marked Canada's fourth annual National Day of Service which honours the incredible acts of courage, sacrifice, and kindness shown by Canadians following the tragic events of 9/11. On this day, all Canadians are encouraged to demonstrate compassion to those in need by engaging in charitable activities - whether through fundraisers, community service, or in kind - for worthy causes across the country.

The Minister marked the day by meeting employees in the Department of Justice's Ontario Regional Office, coinciding with the launch of the 2014 Government of Canada Workplace Charitable Campaign (GCWCC). The campaign is a program developed exclusively for federal public servants and federal retirees that takes place in federal government workplaces across Canada from September to December and allows all public servants to give back to their communities, above and beyond their day-to-day official duties.

In addition to their important donations, Minister MacKay also encouraged Justice Canada employees to get involved and volunteer. In particular, he noted the contributions of Justice Canada lawyers to the department's pro bono program, which allows them to pursue and meet their personal goals and professional obligation to give back directly to their communities through pro bono legal activities.

Quick Facts

  • September 11th was first declared a "National Day of Service" by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2011, on the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, to encourage Canadians to recognize the day as a day of giving and contributing to one's community.

  • Last year, through the GCWCC, public servants raised more than $37 million for charities across Canada, providing support to thousands of individuals in the communities where they live and work. Justice Canada employees have consistently raised approximately $1M per year.

  • The Department of Justice has currently approved pro bono projects in Vancouver, Edmonton, and Ottawa and is currently seeking to increase the number of pro bono activities approved under the policy.

  • During the pilot project phase of the pro bono projects, more than 115 lawyers volunteered over 900 pro bono legal service hours, working with more than 360 Canadians who might not otherwise have had access to legal advice.

Quotes

"The National Day of Service is a time to celebrate those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of others and it is also a time to look forward - to how we can all make a difference in our communities. It is a time to honour those who are dedicated to helping people in need whether at home or abroad - and to making all our communities better places to live and raise our families. It is also an opportunity to reflect on and contribute to charitable causes that can make a real difference in the lives of individuals, families or groups. I invite all Canadians to use this day as a reminder to engage in an initiative and charity of their choice and to find ways to give back to their communities, today and every day."

The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Related Products

Backgrounder: Policy for Pro Bono Services by Department of Justice lawyers.

Associated Links

Government of Canada Workplace Charitable Campaign

Prime Minister Declares September 11th a National Day of Service

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Contact Information

  • Clarissa Lamb
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Minister of Justice
    613-992-4621

    Media Relations Office
    Department of Justice
    613-957-4207