When Kim Stanton entered law school, she did not plan to article and become a lawyer in private practice. The fact that Kim did article and now has her own practice may make it seem like she had a major change of heart. However, even a quick look at her resume makes it very obvious that she has stayed true to her focuses on social justice, women's equality, and human rights.
Kim has pursued these passions in different ways. Apart from running her own legal practice focused on Aboriginal, administrative, and human rights law, she serves as the Legal Director of the Women's Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF).
LEAF is a national Canadian organization based in Toronto that exists to ensure equality rights of women and girls under the law. As LEAF Legal Director, Kim supports the development and implementation of LEAF's legal program. This includes consultation, research, law reform initiatives, tracking Canadian and international equality laws, and appellate case intervention litigation.
Kim cites a myriad of issues for why LEAF's work is still incredibly important today. "Although women appear to have made many gains over the last few decades, there are many women and girls who have not benefited from these gains and who continue to suffer discrimination and worse due to the fact that they are female."
Issues like the violence experienced by Indigenous women and girls, inequality in the workforce, a lack of child care options, and limited access to sexual and reproductive health information and services have made Kim a long-time activist for women's rights causes. Having volunteered with many women's organizations and initiatives before law school, UBC Law and its Centre for Feminist Legal Studies were a natural fit for her. While attending UBC Law, Kim maintained her passion for social justice. Besides building strong and lasting friendships, she cites Professor Marlee Kline's Social Welfare class, the Wilson Moot, and her work writing letters with the Amnesty International Urgent Action chapter as particular law school standouts.
Kim credits her law school education for making her much more capable in her various roles and for helping her realize new ways to follow her passions. "I learned that combining academic work with practice is a useful way to contribute in the community, as both academia and practice can benefit from one another. The research, writing and oral advocacy skills I learned at law school have been invaluable".
"With so much more work left to do, having this skill and dedication is just as important as ever. We have a long way to go before substantive equality is the birthright of every girl in Canada. LEAF is needed more than ever to work toward that goal."
When this Alumni, who has also completed a Master's and Doctorate of Law in Toronto, is not busy advocating for the rights of others, she can be found playing a number of outdoor sports, sharing meals with friends, and occasionally travelling.