Pamela Glatt, JD ’16, director of education for Innocence Canada provides introduction to wrongful convictions

November 07, 2023

Pamela Glatt standing at a lecturn

When Pamela Glatt (JD ’16) was a student at Western Law, a volunteer project for Innocence Canada through her role with Pro Bono Students Canada catalyzed her interest in wrongful convictions. Today, she serves as director of education for Innocence Canada, a non-profit organization dedicated to identifying, advocating for, and exonerating individuals convicted of crimes that they did not commit.  

Glatt returned to Western Law on October 26 to speak to criminal law students as part of her cross-country law school tour educating students about the work of Innocence Canada. She noted the importance of encouraging law students to learn about wrongful convictions as it isn’t a primary area of focus in legal education.  

She provided an overview of the conviction review process in Canada and explained the sorts of cases that Innocence Canada is able to support. Innocence Canada works with clients convicted in homicide cases who have exhausted all other avenues of appeal and only when there is new and significant evidence. Since the organization’s founding in 1993, they have exonerated 27 innocent Canadians, including Steven Truscott and Guy Paul Morin, and have 50 active cases with 69 more on a waitlist.  

Glatt also presented anonymous client demographic data and engaged students in a discussion of equity issues connected to the justice system including how those from equity-deserving communities are less likely to appeal wrongful convictions. She concluded with a discussion of the insufficient compensation scheme for wrongfully convicted Canadians, public inquiries into wrongful convictions, and the ongoing appraisal of proposed amendments to the criminal conviction review process at the Ministry of Justice.