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Commission/ Robert-Sauvé Award

Robert-Sauvé Award


Winners 2007

The Commission des services juridiques created the Robert-Sauvé Award in order to recognize the exceptional contribution of individuals to promoting the rights of the less fortunate. These individuals come from within the legal aid network (the Network Award) or from outside the legal aid network (General Public Award).

« General Public » category

Mr. Fernand Côté and Mrs. Arlène Gaudreault

Mr. Fernand Côté
After a successful legal career, Mr. Fernand Côté took a well-earned retirement in 1995. As of 1996, he became involved in Les Œuvres de la Maison Delphine, an organization who purpose is to involve street youth in the resolution of their own problems, with a view to social rehabilitation. He noticed that the youngsters were burdened by the accusations and fines levied against them. With the help of other lawyers, he attempted to remedy the problem. In 2003, thanks to a grant from the Caisse populaire Desjardins de Québec, he established a legal assistance department. This department, comprised of a young lawyer with social work training, is perfectly tailored to the reality experienced by these youngsters, because it is situated within their surroundings, it operates simply and quickly and its services are provided at no cost. Through his unremitting work, compassion and determination, Mr. Côté was able to earn the trust of the youngsters, who saw in him a representative of law and order. He was also the architect of the Table de concertation relative à la Protection des droits et la prévention de la déviance (round table on the protection of rights and prevention of deviance) which brings together key players from all sectors. In 2001, Mr. Côté agreed to sit on the board of directors of l’Autre Avenue, an alternative justice organization. By making justice available to marginalized youth, Mr. Côté has shown that once legal problems have been ironed out, street youth can focus more calmly on improving their lives and reintegrating into society. Mr. Côté received the Hommage bénévolat-Québec award in 2004 as well as the Prix de l’engagement social conferred by the Caisse populaire Desjardins de Québec in 2005.

Mrs. Arlène Gaudreault
Mrs. Gaudreault, who has been coordinator of internships at the École de criminologie de l’Université de Montréal and a lecturer in victimology since 1984, was president of the Association des criminologues du Québec from 1981 to 1985 and, during that time, was also the coordinator of the first Centre d’aide aux victimes d’actes criminels (crime victims' assistance centre). She participated in the establishment of the Association Plaidoyer-Victimes, a community organization that defends and promotes the rights of crime victims, and has been its president since 1988. For more than 20 years, she has striven to provide crime victims with a voice within the penal system. She has participated in a number of public consultations and drafted numerous articles and memoranda that have been presented before Québec and Canadian agencies. A sought-after lecturer, she willingly shares her expertise and extensive knowledge in matters of victimology. Judges, lawyers, police officers and correctional officers, among others, have benefited from her experience and have gained an awareness of the many difficulties faced by victims of crime. Mrs. Gaudreault has also published extensively in the field of victimology, thereby making a significant contribution to this branch of criminology. Mrs. Gaudreault approaches her work with a tireless and tenacious, yet tempered, dedication and is valued by her peers as well as by the victims with whom she is able to develop a relationship of trust. A recipient of the Prix de la Justice du Québec and the Award of Excellence conferred by the Canadian Criminal Justice Association, Mrs. Gaudreault's leadership within the justice system has garnered the trust of those around her, particularly victims of crime.

« Legal Aid Network » category

Me Claude Beaulieu

Fernand Côté, winner of the Robert-Sauvé Award - General Public Award, Arlène Gaudreault, winner of the Robert-Sauvé Award - General Public Award, Claude Beaulieu, winner of the Robert-Sauvé Award - Network Award, and Me Denis Roy
Me Claude Beaulieu
Me Claude Beaulieu was the director of the Chicoutimi legal aid bureau from October 1984 to June 2007. From 1976 onwards, he practised criminal law there for more than 30 years. Me Beaulieu, a well-known jurist respected by his colleagues, devoted his career to defending those less fortunate within our society with enthusiasm and determination. He has shared his experience and knowledge as an instructor at the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi and by participating for several years as organizer, moderator and lecturer of continuing education seminars presented, among others, by the Québec Bar, the Commission des services juridiques and the Association des avocats et avocates de la défense, of which he is a founding member and has been a member of the board of directors since 1995. He is very active within the Barreau du Saguenay - Lac St-Jean, sitting as a member of the Comité de la Cour du Québec for close to 25 years and as chairman thereof since 1995. Indeed, the Barreau du Saguenay - Lac St-Jean recognized his exceptional contribution to the community by awarding him the Médaille du Barreau in 2006. Throughout his career, Me Beaulieu has been highly involved with numerous community organizations, including the Crime Victims Assistance Centre. Of note is his involvement with individuals suffering from mental illness, of which his collaboration with the Canadian Mental Health Association, and, in particular, with the Macadam program, are examples. In his quest to improve living conditions for the less fortunate, Me Beaulieu was particularly involved in La maison d’accueil pour sans-abri de Chicoutimi (shelter for the homeless). He has been a member of the board of directors of the shelter since 2000 and chairman since 2002.
Robert Sauvé
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© Commission des services juridiques Création: Diane Laurin - 2017