Help us achieve
Rationing Justice Report Released
December 16, 2009
A new report has just been released documenting the effects of the recession on access to legal services for low-income residents of DC. The report reveals alarming new facts about the extent to which the recession has limited access to justice for many of the city’s residents. Highlights from the report include:
- Funding for legal assistance in DC has dropped more than 25%. This has had a very real impact on service delivery, causing legal service organizations to lay off staff, close intakes sites and reduce services.
- 2,100 fewer clients across the city will receive legal assistance. Less funding means fewer lawyers, which means fewer clients will receive desperately needed assistance to secure the most basic of human needs.
- In 2010, legal service providers will be hit even harder as key funding from every source is expected to decrease. DC government funding has already seen a $700,000 cut, individual and law firm giving is down by 20% and is expected to decrease or remain flat, and foundation giving is expected to decline as a result of the drop in endowment equity.
Our 2010 budget is tight, and Ayuda is already feeling the effects, including a cut of over $100,000 from the DC government alone; forcing us to reduce office space, delay hiring of attorneys and social services staff, and reduce administrative support. Our clients will be waiting longer to receive legal services as we prioritize those with critical cases, and we will provide fewer domestic violence survivors with comprehensive case management support (linking them to housing, food, education, and medical care) due to severe cuts in our social services budget. It is during times like this that we most rely on the generosity of our committed supporters. You can help hundreds of low-income immigrants access justice by donating to Ayuda today.
Rationing Justice was a joint report of the D.C. Access to Justice Commission and the D.C. Consortium of Legal Services Providers. To access the full report click here.