Josephine is from the County of Yorkshire, in the United Kingdom. She grew up in Leeds, and gained an Assisted Place to enable her to attend Leeds Girls' High School, where she completed her GCSE's and A-levels. She worked at her parent's art shop on the weekends and worked as a legal assistant immediately following high school. Josephine then attended the University of Keele, in England, to study Law with Philosophy.
After obtaining her degree, she moved to Saskatoon in 2008 and worked as a legal assistant at Semaganis Worme Legal.
She completed the Canadian National Committee on Accreditation process and articled under Donald E. Worme, Q.C., IPC (Queen's Counsel and Indigenous Peoples Counsel). Mr. Worme, Q.C., IPC was former Commission Counsel for the Ipperwash Inquiry, Stonechild Inquiry, and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and represented the Assembly of First Nations in the Provincial Missing and Murdered Women Inquiry in British Columbia.
As a paralegal and articling student, Josephine became acquainted with the array of unique Indigenous Nations in Saskatchewan and has focused her legal practice towards advocating for Indigenous clients in areas of constitutional law, criminal law, child welfare law, and litigation, as well as First Nation elections.
Josephine was called to the Saskatchewan bar in 2012 and continued to work at Semaganis Worme Legal representing various First Nations, Tribal Councils, Indigenous organizations, and individuals facing discrimination in the justice system.
Josephine acted as counsel for the deceased's family in the Kinew James Inquest and is engaged in various litigation and appeals across the country defending the inherent rights of Indigenous Nations to regulate child welfare in their jurisdictions.
As well as position papers and legal opinions, Josephine has also drafted and delivered presentations, articles and speeches on the subject of inherent and Treaty rights, restorative justice, militarization of the police, gaps in the prison system, and genocide, among others.
As a non-Indigenous honourary member of the Indigenous Bar Association, Josephine understands her Lawyer's Oath as comprising an additional element whereby she is accountable to the Indigenous communities she represents and has a duty to do no harm to Indigenous peoples, rights, or interests with the knowledge and skills she has gained throughout her practice.
Julia Tousaw is from Goderich, Ontario and was a member of the Charter Class of the Bora Laskin Faculty of Law at Lakehead University, where she focused her studies on Aboriginal law and Indigenous legal traditions before graduating with the silver medal. Julia finished law school with a total of 12 months' work experience in criminal and family law, having worked as a law student for Legal Aid Ontario in Thunder Bay and Timmins, and for the Crown Attorney's Office in Kenora.
Julia went on to article at a Crown Attorney's Office in southern Ontario. She was called to the Bar in June 2017 and spent her first year of practice prosecuting offences under the Criminal Code as an Assistant Crown Attorney. She switched gears in June 2018 when she joined Hensel Barristers as an Associate. She has never looked back.
Julia is an avid runner, fiddler and paddler. She is published in the Indigenous Law Journal.
Sarah Beamish is an associate with Hensel Barristers, which she joined in April 2018. Sarah was called to the Ontario Bar in 2015.
Sarah was born in Melfort, Saskatchewan and grew up across Treaty 6 lands. Her ancestors come from western Europe and Aotearoa-New Zealand. She is a member of the Ngāruahinerangi (Māori) people.
Sarah's work includes a range of practice areas, with a primary focus on civil litigation and administrative law. During her time with Hensel Barristers she has represented clients at the Superior Court, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal, the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, and the Seneca Nation of Indians Peacemaker's Court (she is one of the few lawyers in Canada approved to practice before this court).
Prior to joining Hensel Barristers, Sarah worked at a social justice and public interest litigation firm in Toronto. In addition to her litigation practice, which included work on such prominent files as the Choc/Chub/Caal v. HudBay Minerals corporate accountability litigation and a class action related to mass civil liberties violations during the 2010 G20 summit, she developed a focus on non-profit and charity law, qualified donee status for Indigenous governmental bodies, residential tenancy law, and workplace/employment law.
Sarah also has extensive experience in the human rights field as an activist, researcher, advocate, and governor, including over 14 years at the international level. She is currently the elected Vice-Chair of the International Board of Amnesty International, where her portfolio is focused on law and policy and gender/equity/diversity work. She is the former elected President of the board of Amnesty International Canada (English-Speaking), where she also held roles related to Indigenous rights work, human rights in Colombia, and youth and student leadership. Much of her other human rights-related work has focused on discrimination, and corporate accountability in the extractives sector. Highlights included fellowships with the Centre for Public Interest Law's Mining Communities Support Programme in Ghana, and the One Justice Project, a research and advocacy initiative seeking legal accountability for grave violations of economic, social, and cultural rights and environmental law.
Sarah graduated from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, where she was awarded the faculty's prizes for achievements in Human Rights Law and Feminist Analysis of Law. She also holds a Master of Global Affairs with a specialization in Global Civil Society (her graduate project was a study of the health system impacts of the West African Ebola crisis for Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières Canada), and a BA in Political Science (with Great Distinction).