Aviva Basman was called to the bar in 2003. After clerking at the Federal Court, she began her career at the Department of Justice in the Immigration Law Section. Aviva then joined Legal Aid Ontario’s Refugee Law Office, where she represented refugee claimants and migrants before all Divisions of the Immigration and Refugee Board and the Federal Courts. She has also represented public interest interveners at the Federal Court of Appeal and Supreme Court of Canada.
From 2016 – 2018, Aviva worked at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, first in Nairobi on refugee resettlement, and then in Ottawa as Senior Protection Officer. From 2018 to 2020, Aviva was the Assistant Deputy Chairperson of the Immigration and Refugee Board’s Immigration Division in Central Region, where she led that Region’s reforms to its immigration detention adjudication practices.
Aviva returned to Legal Aid Ontario in 2020, and co-manages the Refugee Law Office, while maintaining a practice focused on public interest litigation. She also serves as President of the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers. Aviva has a keen interest in legal education, and has organized, moderated, and presented at refugee and immigration law conferences throughout her career.