Founded in 2016, Health Justice Program in Northwest Toronto is a new joint collaborative program between Rexdale Community Legal Clinic (RCLC), Community Legal Aid Services Program (CLASP), Rexdale Community Health Centre (RCHC), Black Creek Community Health Centre (BCCHC) and Pro Bono Law Ontario. Together we aim to address social determinants of health and, in particular, mental health.

Our team collaborates to assist clients, especially those with complex social, medical and legal needs. We provide free legal information, advice, assisted referrals and select representation to low-income patients of local community clinics and hospitals who are faced with barriers to justice as a result of their health-related challenges and, subsequently, legal issues that are negatively impacting on their well-being. Our services are directed towards preventative legal information, advice and brief services. We also provide free public legal education presentations to community residents and community organizations on request.

To access our services, individuals may contact us directly at 416 741 5201, attend our weekly drop-in service at BCCHC and RCHC or be referred to us through their health care provider. We are onsite at RCHC (8 Taber Road) every Wednesday afternoon, and BCCHC (2202 Jane St. Unit 5) every Thursday afternoon.  If you are a community organization interested in a public legal education session by our team, please send a request to Rafeena at bacchusr@lao.on.ca.

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Photo of  B. Rafeena Bacchus, Program Manager and Legal Counsel

About our Program Manager and Legal Counsel – B. Rafeena Bacchus

B. Rafeena Bacchus obtained her LL.B from Dalhousie University and completed a Judicial Clerkship with Chief Justice Desroches at the Supreme Court of Prince Edward Island. In the time since completing her clerkship, Rafeena has been a Partner at Zuber and Company, a civil litigation boutique where she specialized in tort, oil spill litigation, product liability, coverage issues, and subrogation. She has also served as the Program Director of the Global Conscience Initiative in Cameroon, Africa, where she was a key player in the execution of the law enforcement division of the program and litigated on behalf of prisoners and families of prisoners that were unjustly tortured or murdered while incarcerated.

Currently, Rafeena is serving as Program Manager and Legal Counsel of the Northwest Toronto Health Justice Partnership (HJP). In this capacity, she is responsible for the development of the program, including oversight of all operations, strategic development and building the legal team for program service delivery. Rafeena also supervises students from Osgoode Hall Law School, who are enrolled in the HJP program for credits and practical experience.