Thursday, July 6, 2017

Clicklaw Refresher: Introduction to Legal Information & Help Online

Last week we presented an interactive webinar on using Clicklaw. Thank you everyone who tuned in and participated!

We covered the basics of using the site and went through some practice questions together using polls and live demonstrations.

If you were unable to attend or you want to revisit the presentation, we have made a recording available!

Check it out:

Clicklaw Refresher for Libraries and Community Helpers-Webinar Recording from Courthouse Libraries BC on Vimeo.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Webinar Reminder: FOI 101

Just a quick FYI about the upcoming FOI Webinar :)
Sign Up Here!


Courthouse Libraries BC will be hosting a webinar by the BC Freedom of Information and Privacy Association next week!

If you are interested in learning more about Freedom of Information (FOI) requests, be sure to sign up for this 1 hour webinar July 11, 12:30pm-1:30pm.



Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Last Chance to Order LSS New & Revised Titles Package

Last Chance to Order LSS New & Revised titles Package! We will be retiring this package June 30th so, if you're interested, get your orders in before then!


What you get:

The order form for the new package includes 9 new or revised titles and 2 multilingual publication add-ons.

The kit is intended to get you started with these new publications: you have the option of ordering 5 OR 10 copies each depending on your library's needs.
 
To Order:
• Fill out the order form
• Send me your order form (to smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca) OR fax to 604-660-2821

The form also includes the option to set up a customer account so you can order more (for free)!

Monday, May 29, 2017

New Resources & Clicklaw Common Questions

New Common Questions on Clicklaw 

With the help of the BC Freedom of Information and Privacy Association:


New (Free) Publications:


Explains consumer rights for common purchases and contracts. Now includes a new section on making a contract.

Covers 15 of the most common scams. Now includes new sections on romance scams, charity scams, and expanded coverage of online and computer scams.

A Death in Your Family (updated)
Covers preparing for the death of a loved one, what to do immediately after the death, making the funeral arrangements, and where to find support. 

New Publications Package - LSS New and Revised Titles
9 new or revised titles from Legal Services Society including 
  • Your welfare rights: How to apply for welfare
  • Is That Legal? What the Law Says about Online Harassment and Abuse
  • Income Assistance on Reserve in British Columbia
    ...and more!


Upcoming Webinars:


As of June 1st,  the CRT will begin accepting small claims disputes under $5,000. This webinar provides a walk through of the CRT process and some changes specific to small claims disputes.

Clicklaw Refresher for Libraries & Community Helpers
We will be reviewing how to search Clicklaw for reliable legal information specific to B.C. as well as how to use Clicklaw Wikibooks and the Clicklaw Helpmap to make better referrals. 

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

New Publications Package - LSS New and Revised Titles

Preview of the Order Form
Remember the Starter Legal Display Kit? LawMatters and the Legal Services Society are teaming up again to offer a New Publications Package!

The order form for the new package includes 9 new or revised titles and 2 multilingual publication add-ons.

The kit is intended to get you started with these new publications: you have the option of ordering 5 OR 10 copies each depending on your library's needs.
 

To Order:


Fill out the order form
Send me your order form (to smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca)

☺️ That's it! ☺️

The form also includes the option to set up a customer account so you can order more (for free)!

Download the Order Form 
 

Feedback - What do you think?


LSS is looking for feedback on these types of mailout packages and their free publications - if you ordered the Starter Legal Display Kit in 2016 or have thoughts about LSS publications please fill out their survey here:

Thank you for your feedback! 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Legal Information Workshop and Community Discussion in Salmon Arm

Last week, Audrey Jun was on the road representing LawMatters and Clicklaw in the Okanagan!

Audrey gave a great presentation on Clicklaw and legal information to library staff at the Salmon Arm branch of the Okanagan Regional Library.

The library also hosted a Community Discussion on Legal Information:

Organizations were invited to share information, resources, and ideas on legal information and services in their community. Audrey was joined by Nicky Dunlop from PovNet to facilitate the meeting.

Thank You!

James and the staff at Salmon Arm Library for inviting us to present on Clicklaw and for hosting the community discussion!

All of our participants at the Community Discussion on Legal Information for sharing their experiences, stories, and ideas!


All of this is a part of the services offered by the LawMatters Program. If you are interested in training or hosting a community discussion at your library, send me an email at smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Courthouse Library Tour & BC Library Conference 2017

Tour of Courthouse Libraries BC - Vancouver


Last week I had the pleasure of touring a group of BC Library Conference attendees through the Vancouver location of Courthouse Libraries BC (CLBC)!
I was joined by CLBC’s Client Services Librarian Megan Smiley (you may remember her from our webinar in March) and our Clicklaw Coordinator Audrey Jun! We covered our services, staffing, collections, and our outreach and digital initiatives - We really made the most of our time! Everyone had great questions and made the tour a lot of fun.

If you missed the tour but have questions about CLBC and what we do – send me an email!

BC Library Conference


Last year I presented at the Library Conference - this year many of you found me at my exhibitor's table. I had information on Clicklaw, Clicklaw Wikibooks and a new brochure for the LawMatters program.

Thank you everyone who dropped by and said hello; I really appreciated your feedback on the LawMatters program. While we mostly communicate online by email, having the opportunity to meet many of you face-to-face was a treat! I love hearing about your libraries, communities, and, of course, your experiences with legal information!


Speaking of legal information, there was a lot of fantastic PLEI (public legal education & information) represented at the conference this year – I shared my table with online information pathway MyLawBC and wasn’t far from the Legal Services Society's publications table. People's Law School also had their publications on display. If you saw anything that caught your eye, all these publications are free to order on Crown Publications!


I hope to see you all again next year!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Make a Will Week

Make-a-Will Week 2017 is April 9 to 15 and aims to encourage British Columbians to write their will or bring an existing will up-to-date.

Resources:


  • Wills and Personal Planning Resource page
    • Click on Public Librarians and Community Helpers to see what resources you can use to help get your patrons started in a good direction
    • Print out For the Public and use as handouts
    • The PDF guides online are linked to all of the resources listed
  • Nidus Personal Planning Resource Centre and Registry
  • MyLawBC 
    • Can help you make a simple will that reflects your wishes and fits your situation. As you work with the site it will explain the decisions you’ll need to make when writing a will and at the end of the process will provide you with a simple form to fill out to create your will. 
  • Access Pro Bono Wills Clinics (Vancouver)
    • Weekly Wills Clinic is held each Wednesday for low-income seniors (ages 55+) and people with terminal illnesses by appointment only.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

How to turn $125 into a Legal Collection

New guide with examples!

Check it out here:

How to turn $125 into a Legal Collection (Word doc),


The guide is also available off of the LawMatters website

The smallest LawMatters grant given out is $125 –The purpose of this short guide is to give you examples of how you can build a great introductory legal collection with $125!

The examples  have been selected from the Law Books for Libraries 2017 (LBL) list with small libraries in mind – price, space, and subjects have been considered.

Step 1 is to start with free information!

You can collect quite a lot of information using free materials! Most titles included in the examples in the guide are available digitally or in print!

If space is a concern for your library or you don’t have a place to display pamphlets or booklets you can:
  • Access these online
  • Link them to your catalogue or website (if that is an option for you)
  • Download the PDF versions to access them offline

Step 2 is choosing books you want to spend your grant on!

Other tools for selection:

  • Legal Collections – Getting Started: This document contains some similar information but considers collection sizes from small to large and also recommends items for ‘all library collections.’ Included are electronic resources and a broader range of subject matter.
  • Law Books for Libraries 2017: This is an Excel document that contains ALL recommended titles for public libraries. Titles on this list can be filtered and organized by subject area, library size, price, and more. It is also colour coded to alert you to updated titles and new titles added to the list.

If you have any questions, please contact LawMatters Program Coordinator Shannon McLeod at smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca

Monday, March 27, 2017

Where are the Self-Counsel Press titles?

You may have noticed a change in the Law Books for Libraries list: a number of Self-Counsel Press (SCP) titles have been removed. Books by this publisher are often fairly popular - they have good name recognition.

The reason some SCP titles are not represented on the list is because many of them are intended to be used by a single purchaser. SCP no longer sells many of their kits to libraries – these are individually marked as such on their website as ‘not for sale to libraries.’

Please note that there are still some SPC titles on the LBL list – you should be able to order them as they do not have the library restriction marked on them.

Here is the list of titles not sold to libraries (don’t worry; I’m including some alternative resources so you can still find information on these topics!):


British Columbia Probate Kit: Everything you need to probate or administer an estate
Alternatives: 

Online:
I’m applying for probate; where can I find the forms required?
I am the executor of my mother's will and am doing the work myself
How do I know if a will has been probated?


Print:
Being an Executor (booklet)


British Columbia Do Your Own Divorce Kit

Alternatives:

Online:
Family Law in British Columbia - Divorce & Separation
Our marriage is over; do we have to go to court?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Legal Collections 101 for Public Libraries - Recorded Webinar Now Available

A recorded version of this webinar is now available!

Webinar Summary:

Join LawMatters Coordinator Shannon McLeod and Courthouse Libraries BC librarian Megan Smiley for this one hour webinar on building your library's legal collection.

Whether you have been handling your library's legal collection for a while or you are new to collecting legal materials, tune in to learn more about:

- Using the Law Books for Libraries (LBL) list
- An overview and what you can expect from different legal publishers
- Tips for selecting legal titles

We presented this webinar on March 8th - Check it out below!


Legal Collections 101 for Public Libraries Recorded Webinar from Courthouse Libraries BC on Vimeo.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Getting Started with your Legal Collection – New Guide!


This year I’ve created a new document to help get you started with your legal collection.

Whether you are new to your role in collections, new to the LawMatters program, or are looking for a little more guidance making selections, I hope you will find this guide helpful! 

You have given me some great feedback about the collection support that LawMatters offers and one of the things I heard was that many of you would like a way to help prioritize purchases – a clearer way to figure out the best starting points for your legal collection.

The main selection tool provided by LawMatters is the Law Books for Libraries list. This list has been organized with filters to help you make selections by subject, library collection size, and more.

I recognize that this excel document can be a little overwhelming with over 230 titles currently listed! This new guide will provide information more “at-a-glance!” It is organized by subject and provides titles recommended for different size collections. All titles are also linked to the publishers’ pages.

This is a Word document so check out the headings in the Navigation Pane to quickly jump to the subject you want to explore.

Download the document here or check out the LawMatters website.

Take a look and let me know what you think!

Example from the Guide

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Grant Offers & New Law Books for Libraries List

It’s that time of year again! This week, LawMatters will be sending out grant offers to public libraries to be put towards building legal information collections.

How can my library participate?


A Grant Agreement Letter will be emailed to the chief librarians/directors of public libraries in BC along with the following:

  • Legal Collections – Getting Started (NEW)
  • Selection Guidelines
  • Law Books for Libraries (LBL) for 2017 (UPDATED)

All documents except for the Grant Agreement Letter are available online to view/download from the LawMatters website.

The Process:


1) Agreement Letter

  • Sign & Send us a copy
  • Keep a copy for your records

2) Receive your grant

  • We send you a cheque for the amount specified in your agreement letter

3) Collect & Consult

  • Use LBL 2017 as your guide to purchasing materials with the grant
  • See something not on the list? Check our Guidelines and contact the Program Coordinator before purchasing

4) Report

  • Let us know how you spent your grant
  • Send us a report in by October 16 with the titles you purchased and for which of your locations (if applicable)

Please let me know if you prefer to have a print copy of the Grant Agreement Letter sent to you by mail. Send me an email smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca or give me a call 604-660-9204 if you have further questions.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Legal Information Workshop and Community Discussion in Prince Rupert


Look at that sunset!
Last week I was in Prince Rupert to give a presentation on legal information and to help  facilitate discussion on local resources. It was a whirlwind trip but I had a great time!

My visit consisted of two parts (maybe three if you count watching the sunset):

Library Staff Presentation:

I gave a presentation to Prince Rupert Public Library staff on Legal Information and Help Online using Clicklaw. Everyone had great questions and experiences to share.

We covered accessing legal resources online, the differences between legal information and legal advice, and practice questions!

Community Discussion on Legal Information:

The library hosted representatives from community groups to discuss legal information and services in Prince Rupert.  I helped facilitate this discussion and highlighted the great legal resources that are available at the library!

This meeting provided an opportunity to make face-to-face connections, brainstorm ideas, and learn about resources like Clicklaw.

Thank You!

Joe and the staff at Prince Rupert Public Library for inviting me to give my presentation and for hosting the community discussion!

All of our participants at the Community Discussion on Legal Information for sharing their experiences, stories, and ideas!


All of this is a part of the services offered by the LawMatters Program. If you are interested in training or hosting a community discussion at your library, send me an email at smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Grants, Law Books List, Webinar Training … oh my!

Yes it’s that time of year again: the LawMattesr grants offers will be going out in March to the directors of your library systems … I will also be sending out the updated Law Books for Libraries (LBL) list! For those of you who may not be familiar, the LBL list is your guide to help make collections decisions.

Speaking of collections decisions … I am trying a little something different this year –

With the release of the grant offers and the LBL, I am also offering a webinar:

“Legal Collections 101"

March 8
12:30pm-1:30pm

Whether you have been handling your library’s legal collection for a while, or you are new to collecting legal materials, tune in to learn more about:

  • Using the LBL
  • An overview of what you can expect from different legal publishers
  • Tips for selecting legal titles

I will also be producing a couple more collections guides to help get you started!



As part of LawMatters, I want to make sure that you have the choice in deciding what legal materials are right for your library and your community – and that you have the tools to make these decisions. I hope that providing these guides and this webinar will help make using the grant and collecting legal materials easier!

New Webinar Series focuses on Making Connections: Organization Spotlights

Hello everyone, I am excited to announce a new webinar series we are trying with the LawMatter’s program this year: Organization Spotlights!

The legal information world can get confusing at times – there are many organizations and many acronyms! With this webinar series, I want to help you navigate public legal education and information (PLEI) – see there’s an acronym already!

Do you do outreach at your library?
Do you know who offers legal help or services in your community?

We are inviting organizations to share information about their services in this spotlight series to help shed some light on making local referrals and also exploring potential connections. We will be focusing on organizations that either have a physical presence across BC or are accessible throughout the province (phone services for example).


The first spotlight is March 2, 2017

Legal Services Society (LSS)
with Alex Peel,  Acting Community Engagement Coordinator
12:30pm - 1:30pm

How do people access legal aid in BC? The Legal Services Society (LSS) offers a range of legal help for British Columbians. In this webinar, learn what LSS provides and how you can direct patrons in your community to get free legal representation, advice, and information. With over 55 in-person locations in BC, there is likely even a local office you could send your patrons to. We’ll tell you where they are and what services they provide.



Stay tuned for more spotlights!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

LawMatters Celebrates 10 Years!

Happy 10th Anniversary Everyone!


LawMatters started as a 3 year project in 2007 – a decade later, we continue to offer the LawMatters program thanks to the engagement and enthusiasm of the library community!

It’s been a wonderful journey working together toward the shared goal of enhancing public access to legal information in all communities across British Columbia.

Did you know?



What's next?

Check out what we were up to in 2016: LawMatters Year in Review.

LawMatters will continue to seek out opportunities to connect libraries and their communities to legal information. We will also continue to provide collection support and guidance.

In 2017, we are planning more ways to offer legal information and professional development to public library staff – stay tuned!

If you have any questions about the program, please contact the LawMatters Program Coordinator, Shannon McLeod smcleod@courthouselibrary.ca.