The White House Office of Management and Budget released its proposed budget for FY18, which includes defunding the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), departing from the bi-partisan support LSC has received since its founding in 1974. Legal Services of Southern Piedmont does not receive any LSC funding, but strongly opposes any reduction in funding for LSC.
In North Carolina, LSC funding supports LSSP’s Partner in Justice - Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC). LANC and LSSP work together in Charlotte to provide legal assistance to people in crisis, who are struggling to meet their basic human needs. In most parts of North Carolina, LANC is the only legal services provider for low-income people. We stand with LANC and with everyone who believes that LSC should be fully funded to provide legal advice and representation that helps people achieve economic security and opportunity, family safety and stability and access to health care.
LSC responded to the proposed budget with a statement saying that it is confident that bi-partisan Congressional support will continue. LSSP is optimistic that our lawmakers will continue to provide for crucial access to legal services for those most vulnerable in our society. We hope you will stand with us and others to highlight the importance of civil legal aid to our democracy.
The American Bar Association’s HelpLegalAid.org website offers resources that show you how to be a Legal Aid Defender and prevent defunding LSC.
The President’s proposed FY2018 budget would shred other parts of the safety net for people in need. Specifically, it eliminates or cuts funding for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance program; several federal affordable housing programs; the Community Development Block Grant and the Community Services Block Grant; food and nutrition assistance for seniors, mothers, and children; job-training initiatives within the Department of Labor, the Corporation for National and Community Service; and other key programs. These programs support critical services in our community, to help people facing crises and prevent hunger, homelessness and poverty.
I encourage you to make your voice heard on LSC and these other issues, to preserve the critical role our government plays in preventing hardship for friends and neighbors in our community.
Kenneth L Schorr
You can support civil legal aid TODAY
- Contact members of your Congressional delegation in the House of Representatives and Senate and share your concerns on defunding LSC.- Visit DefendLegalAid.org and create a short message for Members of Congress. The American Bar Association (ABA) will print and hand-deliver every message you draft to your representatives.
Spread the word, share this action alert with others and participate in the ABA Defend Legal Aid campaign- Share your story of why #legalaidhelps and how you are a #legalaiddefender on social media
- Support the Access to Justice Campaign with a donation that benefits both LSSP and Legal Aid of North Carolina-Charlotte. Your gift would help ensure that all people in our community have access to the legal system to meet their needs, not just those who can afford it.
- Sign Up for LSSP Action Alerts and follow us on social media to stay informed.