February 2012 Newsletter

We are pleased to share our latest newsletter.

SCATJC February2012

If you have questions, please feel free to email me.

~RFW

LSC President Sandman Discusses Pro Bono

In case you missed it elsewhere, LSC President Sandman discusses pro bono and its importance to legal services programs.

He also discusses the limitations of legal services organizations and the great value of law firm and corporate pro bono participation. Well worth watching!

Tip of the hat to Cheryl Zalenski at the ABA Center for Pro Bono who tweeted this. Thanks for the heads-up.

-RFW

SC ATJ attends the SC Clerk of Court Conference 10.1.09

Last Thursday I had the privilege of speaking at the South Carolina Clerk of Court Conference at the Hilton Garden Inn in Aiken, SC. My presentation was an update of access to justice.

The presentation was met with enthusiasm and discussion continued even past the presentation. Luckily, at the last minute, I was able to incorporate a little of the updated report from LSCDOCUMENTING THE JUSTICE GAP IN AMERICA.

Here’s the presentation:

Clerks fall conf 10.1.09

And here are some of the photos:

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Thanks to Katie Staden from the SC Bar who accompanied me and took some of the photos when I was speaking!

-RFW

Neither Sleet nor Snow nor Hurricanes nor Tornadoes . . .

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Remember the Post Office slogan starting with “Neither Sleet nor Snow. . .?” Sure, but did you know that  there is a site for National Disaster Legal Aid that will provide legal services to individuals during and after disasters?

The site is a collaboration of the American Bar Association (ABA), the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), the National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA), and Pro Bono Net.

In case you missed our earlier post, be sure to add this site to your emergency preparation list.

And, keep in mind that nothing works better in a disaster than preparation.

-RFW

Friday Wrap-Up 5.22.09

Here’s a Wrap-up of the week ending 5.22.09

I know this is mostly pointing folks to other sources for news, but as you can see, there are simply too many stories from the week to cover.

Thanks to my new law clerk Allie! She’s already jumping in with both feet.

Enjoy the stories below and have a safe holiday weekend!

Honolulu – City Awards almost $4 million for Homeless Services

LSC – Update enewsletter

South Carolina – SC Statehouse Report

New Brunswick – New Brunswick is facing Legal Aid cuts

Minneapolis – Best & Flanagan wins Pro Patria Award

Memphis – TBA President ready with plans

Washington D.C. – Bread for the City - Beyond Bread: The Human Rights Clinic

Texas – Texas Access to Justice Foundation 25th Anniversary (thanks State Bar of Texas Blog)

Australia

- Homeless Person’s Legal Service Forum (Robert McClelland)

- Pro Bono Initiative to Strengthen Rule of Law (Robert McClelland) – Lawyers Beyond Borders

The Legal Intelligencer/Law.com – Use ‘Pro Bono Networking’ to Market Yourself into a New Job

New Jersey – TRENTON: State courts closed Fridayand again in June

JD Supra: Legal Articles – The 4 Ps of the Internet: Personal, Private, Professional and Public

Michigan

- Mental health court serves public interest

- The South End – Law School fellowships provide students with work opportunities, tuition dollars

California – New California Law School Unveils its First Clinic

InHouse Insider – 2009 Best Legal Department: And the Winner is . . . (be sure to track all 3 “winners”)

Tolerance.org: Teaching Tolerance - Use This Summer for Social Justice

NPR: Lawyers Make Pro Bono Leap into Foreclosures (thanks to Mercy Politics for pointing us to this story)

-RFW

Congrats Helaine M. Barnett and other Honorees

On Sunday, August 2, 2009, the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession will h0nor Helaine M. Barnett, President of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC); Linda L. Addison, Partner at Fulbright & Jaworski LLP; The Honorable Arnette R. Hubbard, Judge in the Circuit Court of Cook County, IL; The Honorable Vanessa Ruiz, Judge in the District of Columbia Court of Appeals; and Loretta A. Tuell, Partner at AndersonTuell LLP with the Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award.

While all the honorees sound like exceptional women, this is particularly exciting for those of us in the public interest and access to justice field.

Helaine M. Barnett has been a staunch advocate in her role with LSC and an excellent role model.

Congratulations Ms. Barnett!

-RFW

Equal Access Defined: Deep in the Heart ‘O Texas

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Last Friday, 12/12/08, the Austin American Statesman published an Op-Ed by Helaine M. Barnett, the President of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC). In the Op-Ed, Ms. Barnett eloquently describes the gap in legal justice for those able to pay for legal representation and those unable to pay for it. Here are some excerpts:

The people who come to LSC-funded programs for help are the most vulnerable among us.

Census Bureau data show that nearly 51 million Americans have an income of less than 125 percent of the federal poverty guideline (for a family of four, $26,500 a year) and therefore are eligible for civil legal aid from LSC-funded programs.

Those programs lack the funding and staff to provide civil legal assistance to all who seek help.

Across the nation, the outlook is not encouraging. Recessions disproportionately affect the poor, causing a loss of jobs, health care and housing.

Ensuring that the poor are adequately represented in the civil judicial system greatly improves their chances of keeping or securing basic necessities — the keys to stability and self-sufficiency.

Please take a moment to read through Ms. Barnett’s Op-Ed or watch her presentation to the Texas Supreme Court at the December 10, 2008 public hearing on civil legal justice.

-RFW