ABA Day 2021 – Staff Perspectives

This month OneJustice participated in the 2021 virtual ABA Day, where we had the opportunity to lead lobbying and advocacy efforts to increase support for civil legal aid.

Six OneJustice staff members participated virtually and spoke with elected leaders in Washington, led by our amazing colleague Dana Marquez-Richardson! Follow this link to read about some of their experiences!

Bruno Huizar, Program Manager

I am grateful to have the opportunity to (virtually) join hundreds of legal professionals across the country to educate elected officials in Washington D.C. about the importance of legal aid for the American Bar Association (ABA) Digital Conference: Advocacy for Justice. Every year, OneJustice joins hundreds of lawyers, law students, and legal professionals to educate Members of Congress and advocate for increasing funding for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), which funds civil legal aid organizations across the country. OneJustice will continue to advocate for increasing LSC funding so our legal aid partners can continue to provide critical legal services to people navigating legal crisises throughout California.

Miguel Martinez, Program Associate

ABA was an incredible experience. This was my first time participating and I was pleased to meet several congressmen and share with them the importance of securing funding for LSC’s. A highlight from ABA day was meeting Congressman Ted Lieu from the 33rd district. He was very friendly and gave us his support to secure funding for LSC’s. Securing funding for LSC is very important, especially in these times when low income Americans are discouraged from seeking legal aid due to not having the ability to afford one. I look forward to participating again in the future.

Ariella Morrison, Senior Staff Attorney*

Policy advocacy is essential to transforming our civil legal aid system. I loved participating in this year’s ABA Day for the first time. I learned so much and left the virtual lobby visits feeling really energized about the work we do. I feel hopeful that Congress will address the dramatic increase in the need for civil legal aid caused by the overwhelmingly devastating pandemic through the supplemental funding requests we made on behalf of the Legal Services Corporation.

Gracia Berrios, Program Coordinator

This was my first time being part of ABA day and I absolutely loved it! Being part of a group that is advocating to congress for critical funding on behalf of low income communities was really important to me. Hoping we are able to see good change this year for legal aid funding.

* Admitted to practice in Michigan, not admitted in California.