Category Archives: Poverty

Video of Mary McClymont on Importance of Justice For All Innovations For Every Substantive Issue

Recently, I blogged about Mary McClymont’s moving and wonderful speech when she got the Champion of Justice Award. Now, here is the video. Some of the key text: .  .  .  there is good news: the crisis has given rise … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, Access to Justice Boards, Access to Justice Generally, Bar Associations, Communications Strategy, Court Management, Funding, Law Schools, Legal Aid, Media, Political Support, Poverty, Public Education, Public Welfare Foundation, Self-Help Services, Social Workers, Systematic Change

Data Maps Come to Access to Justice Planning

This is an important step in ensuring that strategic planning is informed by underlying indicia of need. The Self-Represented Litigation Network has just launched a national, but highly granulated online tool for looking at national county by county level statistics … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, Access to Justice Generally, Evictions, Housing, Metrics, Poverty, SRL Statistics, SRLN

Getting ATJ Statistics Into Census Data Collection — The Eviction Example Highlighted on

The wonderful, which many of us obsessively check multiple times a day for its magnificent (and frightening) election projection results, has just put up a very important article on the under-counting of the eviction problem.  The title tells it … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Census Bureau, Court Management, Evictions, Federal Agencies, Foreclosure, Housing, Outcome Measures, Poverty, Research and Evalation | 1 Comment

Article on Incentives in Access to Justice

My paper on incentives in access to justice has now been published in the Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics.  Here it is. Here is the full text of the abstract: Most of the current deregulation discussion focuses on permitting both … Continue reading

Posted in ABA, Access to Counsel, Alternative Business Structures, Anti-Trust, Bar Associations, Medical System Comparision, Middle Income, Mixed Model, Non-Lawyer Practice, Outcome Measures, Planning, Political Support, Poverty, Pro Bono, Referral Systems, Research and Evalation, Rules Reform, Self-Help Services, Simplification, Systematic Change, Tax Policy, Technology

Lisa Foster’s ATJ Commissions Meeting Speech Focuses on Big Changes

Lisa Foster’s speech at the ATJ’s Commission focus not on the usual self-congratulation, but on the encourages big changes in focus and vision.  While I did not travel to Chicago for the Conference this year, just the text alone conveys … Continue reading

Posted in 100% Access Strategy and Campaign, Access to Justice Generally, Budget Issues, Chasm with Communities, Dept. of Justice, LAIR, Legal Aid, Litigant Voice, Media, Mediation, Medical System Comparision, Poverty, Reentry, Self-Help Services, Simplification, SRLN, Systematic Change, Technology, video, White House

Council of Economic Advisors Report on Costs and Benefits of Incarceration Versus Other Approaches Incudes Excellent Arguments for Broader Impact of Access to Civil Justice

When the White House Council of Economic Advisors (CEA) speaks, the world listens. And, indeed, when the CEA issued Economic Perspectives on Incarceration and the Criminal Justice System, it was a very big deal. What was unusual was that the … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Justice Generally, Budget Issues, Chasm with Communities, Criminal Law, expungement, Family Law, Legal Aid, Outcome Measures, Poverty, Research and Evalation, Science, White House | 3 Comments

Jim Greiner’s Comment on the Inherent Conflict Respresented by Funding Public Defenders by Fees Charged Defendant’s and My Response

Jim Greiner has submitted a brilliant and challenging comment on my recent post about the funding of 41% of the New Orleans Public Defender from court fines, fees and assessments.  It is worth very serious consideration.  Here is the full … Continue reading

Posted in Attorney-Client, Bail, Budget Issues, Chasm with Communities, Commentators, Court Management, Criminal Law, Defender Programs, Political Support, Poverty, Public Defender | 4 Comments

Disturbing Question — How on Earth Can a Public Defender Program Rely on Court Imposed Fees for its Budget?

I am not sure I can stand this. According to its own communication director, the New Orleans public defender relies on fines and fees imposed by the court for 41% of its budget (NOLA CityLab here). New Orleans’ Office of … Continue reading

Posted in Access to Counsel, Attorney-Client, Bail, Court Fees and Costs, Defender Programs, Poverty | 3 Comments

Comments to FCC Could Help Support Broadband Access fund

On July 17, the FCC proposed a rule change that would modernize and expand its lifeline program.  The current comment period (following extension) closes on Sept 30, 2015. While there are massive technical changes in the proposal, the bottom line … Continue reading

Posted in Funding, Poverty, Technology

High Lifetime Chance of Being Poor Suggests a New Legal Aid/ATJ Funding Argument

For decades we have been struggling with the fact that we think that many, perhaps most, people are resultant to fund legal aid, and particularly means-tested community-based legal aid because they think that it will never help them. (Incidentally, every … Continue reading

Posted in Budget Issues, Communications Strategy, Legal Aid, Political Support, Poverty | 7 Comments

The Nighmare of Website Bias — Lack of Specific Intent, And Hard to Prevent

Back in the early civil rights days, the strongest argument against effective civil rights enforcement was the claim that employment discriminators, for example, were merely following the demands of the market when they hired the most “appealing” staff.  (For a … Continue reading

Posted in Discrimination, Poverty, Technology | 1 Comment

World Bank Working Toward Legal Aid Outcome Measures Including Impact on Poverty

This is news that might have a major long term impact.  As this blog by World Bank Senior Public Sector Specialist Paul Prettitore reports: JCLA [Jordanian CSO Justice Center for Legal Aid] and the World Bank are now designing a … Continue reading

Posted in International Models, Outcome Measures, Poverty, Research and Evalation | 2 Comments

Rapid California Court Rule Action Shows Momentum is Building on Fines and Fees Issue

Here is the story.  On May 1, the Fresno Bee ran a story under the headline: ACLU: Traffic-ticket policy by Valley courts unconstitutional.  The core of the story follows: A court policy of making Valley traffic offenders pay fees upfront … Continue reading

Posted in Chasm with Communities, Court Fees and Costs, Court Management, Poverty | 2 Comments

Claudia Johnson Blogs on Location of Services Where the Poor Now Are — in the Suburbs

One question I always ask myself is, why are most legal non profits, and their services in urban areas when the poverty populations have been moving from the city to the suburbs en mass in the past 10 years?  Why … Continue reading

Posted in Legal Aid, Poverty | Tagged | 4 Comments

NYT Reports Dramatic Numbers of “Near Poor” — Access Implications

In response to a request from the Times, the Census Bureau ran the numbers on the “near poor” defined as 150% of the poverty rate, and using its newer more accurate poverty measure. Perhaps the most startling differences between the … Continue reading

Posted in Middle Income, Poverty