Deepa Mattoo

DirectorBarbra Schlifer Commemorative ClinicFamily (Ontario)

Deepa Mattoo is Director of Legal Services at the Schlifer Clinic and Community Leadership in Justice Fellow at Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work at the University of Toronto. Deepa is a passionate defender of women's rights to safety, access to justice and self-determination. Deepa is an alumna of the Leader of Change program from Maytree Foundation and recipient of Spirit of Barbara Schlifer Award. She has over 19 years of experience in providing legal services, public education, advocacy and not-for-profit governance. Deepa has been involved with various projects related to migrant rights and gender violence globally.

Deepa is the Director Legal Services at the Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic (2016-present). Before joining the Schlifer Clinic, Deepa was Project Co-ordinator, Staff Lawyer and Executive Director at the South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario (2007-2016). Deepa, in her role as Director Legal Services at the Schlifer Clinic, manages the Independent Legal Advise (Sexual Assault) Program at the Clinic.

Since 2016, Deepa has been an Adjunct and Visiting faculty at Faculty of Law, University of Toronto. Deepa was also appointed as Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School (2017-present) for her role as the Co-Director of the Feminist Advocacy Program, hosted at the Schlifer Clinic.

Deepa was the Law Foundation of Ontario's Community Leadership in Justice Fellow at Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work at the University of Toronto (2017). She has trained thousands of service providers for best practices and legal education to work with forced marriage survivors, racialized non-status women, and immigration law clients in the context of gender-based violence across Canada. She has collaborated with multiple government and non-government organizations for developing best practices, research, and resources for forced marriage and "honour"-based violence.

Deepa has appeared before parliamentary committees and commissions on a wide range of social justice and human rights issues as well as acted as an observer at various forums such as UN headquarters. She has represented hundreds of clients at multiple tribunals and courts in multiple jurisdictions.

In 2017, Deepa supervised the Clinic's intervention at the Supreme Court of Canada on a case related to the Hague Convention on International Child Abduction and appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada to offer the perspective of survivors of gender-based violence. Deepa writes poetry and recently her poems were published in an online resource for service providers.


  • Leeds Met University, UK, M.B.A., 2004
  • Law Faculty, MDU, Rohtak, India, LL.B., 1998

Bar Admission

  • Ontario, 2011


  • Canadian Bar Association

Awards & Honours

  • Ontario Volunteer Service Award (10 Years Category) - Ontario Volunteer Service Awards recognize individual volunteers for continuous years of commitment and dedicated service to an organization, 2016
  • Spirit of Barbara Schlifer Award - The Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic awarded Deepa Mattoo the Third Annual Spirit of Barbra Schlifer Award; Deepa is a passionate defender of women rights to safety, access to justice and self-determination and she exemplifies the spirit of Barbra Schlifer in her daily work to create the possibility of freedom from violence, coercion and discrimination, 2015
  • Leader For Change, Maytree Foundation, 2008