Lawyers Urge Congress to Support Legal Aid

  • 5/5/2008
  • Legal Services Corperation
  • Source: CALegalAdvocates (Decommissioned) >

On April 15-17, hundreds of lawyers from throughout the country converged on Washington, D.C., to convince Congress to help make equal justice a reality by supporting increased funding for the Legal Services Corporation.

The American Bar Association (ABA) hosts the annual event to give the nation's attorneys an opportunity to educate the legislative branch on the important issues affecting America's legal system and administration of justice. Securing adequate funding for LSC has always been one of the ABA's top legislative priorities.

This year, the National Conference of Bar Presidents-representing bar associations from all 50 states and two U.S. territories-signed a letter to key Congressional appropriators requesting that LSC receive no less than $400 million for FY 2009, a $50 million increase over current funding levels. Senators Kennedy, D-Mass., and Smith, R-Ore., are circulating a "Dear Colleague" letter again this year in support of the same amount.

At a reception on the night of the 16th, the ABA hosted an awards ceremony to honor Senators Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., Arlen Specter, R-Pa., Pete Domenici, R-N.M., and Congressmen Bobby Scott, D-Va., and Jim Ramstad, R-Minn., for their commitment to improving the justice system, including their support for LSC. All five consistently vote to defend LSC's budget on the floors of their respective chambers, and are reliable allies in the struggle for equal access to justice.

Click here to download the letter from the National Conference of Bar Presidents. ( 72k)