Rod Laporte is a Canadian attorney. He was a law student before entering the Canadian Parliament House of Commons in 1988, serving as a representative for the areas of Moose Jaw and Lake Centre in the Canadian state of Saskatchewan for one term. During his time in Parliament, Rod Laporte was particularly involved in the regulation and oversight of issues related to grain, oilseeds, wheat and agriculture in general. Rod Laporte was defeated in his run for re-election in 1993 and returned to Moose Jaw, where he resumed practicing the law.
Rod Laporte is currently a staff attorney for Legal Aid Sasketchewan, an organization which was founded in 1974 following the passage of the state's "Legal Aid Act." This legislation was designed to create a legal infrastructure providing legal representation for defendants involved in both civil and criminal legal actions who are unable to pay for private legal counsel.
As a staff attorney for Legal Aid Saskatchewan, Rod Laporte is one of over 80 attorneys working on behalf of this organization in a full service capacity. This means that every lawyer, including Rod Laporte, is assigned cases on a rotation basis that shuffles cases from one office to another. Legal Aid Saskatchewan may occasionally decide to transfer handling of a case handled by Rod Laporte or another staff attorney in the interests of easing the workload of each attorney or to avoid a potential conflict of interests. In total, this organization processes approximately 20,000 cases in a calendar year. Of those, more than 90% are handled by staff attorneys rather than contracted to a private attorney. Those seeking representation from Legal Aid Saskatchewan may not request the representation of a specific attorney, such as Rod Laporte.
In addition to its full service representation services, Legal Aid Saskatchewan also provides limited advice and representation in the initial stages of the criminal prosecution process. Once a person is arrested, they may contact Legal Aid Saskatchewan over the telephone and receive legal advice. Such a person can also request that an attorney such as Rod Laporte or another lawyer visit them following the advice received over the telephone. A representative of Legal Aid Saskatchewan, such as Rod Laporte, may also attend the first court hearing of such a defendant. Afterwards, no further counsel will be provided unless the defendant is eligible for full service representation from Rod Laporte or another attorney.
Rod Laporte is an employee of the Moose Jaw office of Legal Aid Saskatchewan. Overall, there are 14 such offices in the state of Saskatchewan. Each such office is operated under independently codified policies and has the ability to decide whether or not it will provide minimal legal advice, information or counsel of any kind, either in person or over the phone, to anyone who requests it, even if they are not required to go to court or have not been detained.