Jessica Saunders

Associate

Biography

Jessica practices primarily in the areas of Indigenous law and Child Protection law.

Jessica is a member of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation and grew up in Cranberry Portage, MB.

Jessica was called to the Bar in 2011. She represents First Nation and Metis Nation communities, organizations and child and family services agencies. She sees her clients through all levels of a litigation matter, from settlement discussions to trials and appeals. Jessica advises clients on a wide range of matters including self-government negotiations, drafting and implementation of Indigenous laws and Indigenous rights.

Jessica has appeared before the Commission of Inquiry into the Circumstances Surrounding the Death of Phoenix Sinclair, the Public Utilities Board, the Clean Environment Commission and all levels of Court in Manitoba.

Jessica was appointed to the Law Society of Manitoba’s Equity Committee in 2016 and held that position until being appointed to the Law Society of Manitoba’s Complaints Investigation Committee in 2018. Jessica was appointed a Bencher of the Law Society of Manitoba in 2019 and was reappointed in 2020. She is the chair of the Law Society’s Equity Committee and is vice-chair of the Complaints Investigation Committee. Jessica is also the chair of the Public Interest Law Centre (PILC) Advisory Committee.

Jessica has won awards and honors for her achievements and volunteer contributions. She was one of eight lawyers on the Families First Pro Bono Team who received the 2015 Pro Bono Award from the Manitoba Bar Association for preparing a report that engaged with families and developed a framework to address the issue of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

Jessica has presented and lectured on Indigenous child welfare and Indigenous rights issues on numerous occasions to community organizations, the law school, conferences, high schools, radio and television media and has served on a number of boards over the years.

Education

University of Manitoba, Bachelor of Laws, 2010

Leadership, Membership and Achievements

  • Law Society of Manitoba
  • Manitoba Bar Association
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Indigenous Bar Association

Practice Areas

Child Protection
Indigenous Law
Business Law
Administrative and Regulatory