On March 27th – 29th, 2023, Jocelyn Ortiz, Leigh Ferrin, Miguel Martinez, Habiba Simjee, and Dana Marquez Richardson of OneJustice will attend ABA Day to advocate for increased federal funding to provide low-income Americans with the civil legal assistance and representation they need. Far too many Americans do not have equal access to justice because they face legal barriers to basic needs, they cannot afford to hire an attorney to help them, and unlike in the criminal justice system, they have no right to an attorney. Instead, they rely on their local civil legal aid nonprofits to get the legal help they need. In California, eleven of those nonprofits count on critically important federal funding through the Legal Services Corporation (“LSC”). OneJustice staff will call upon Congressional Representatives to expand funding for legal aid to assist all low-income Americans with their civil legal needs. For more info on these unmet needs, please visit LSC’s 2022 Justice Gap Report.
Each spring, partnering with the American Bar Association, OneJustice visits with California’s Members of Congress to remind them of the importance of this funding. While this event has been virtual for the last three years, we are so excited to be back on the Hill in 2023!
Our message to Congress is simple: Keep funding LSC. In December 2022, President Biden signed legislation that included $560 million for the Legal Services Corporation, a $71 million increase over the prior year. We will be thanking Congress for its support of LSC and remind them of the needs of Californians, and the vital services that legal aid provides.