What can civil legal aid attorneys do for the health of a community?

 

What can civil legal aid attorneys do for the health of a community? A lot, through innovative medical-legal partnerships with local healthcare providers. Read this great article on how legal aid attorneys can support cancer patients when they face serious legal challenges, like coverage issues, foreclosure and end-of-life planning, that can be devastating to patients and their families if not addressed.

Learn more about LSSP and Legal Aid of North Carolina‘s Carolinas Medical-Legal Partnership with Carolinas HealthCare System.

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Americans with Disabilities Act Anniversary

 

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Yesterday, the Americans with Disabilities Act saw a big anniversary, signed into law 25 years ago with the vision of ensuring people with disabilities “the opportunity to blend fully and equally into the rich mosaic of the American mainstream.” We at LSSP work to ensure that people living with disabilities in our community are empowered to live full lives on their own terms and receive the vital care they need to do so.

Hear from our client Margot who was able to continue living with her family and volunteering in the community after a LSSP attorney represented her.

Learn more about our work for those living with disabilities in our community.

 

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#summershareCLT 2015

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Need doesn’t get a vacation.

Join LSSP in a Charlotte-wide initiative July 13-26 to help local nonprofits meet the needs of our community.

This summer, Legal Services of Southern Piedmont has partnered with #summershareCLT to inspire neighbors to help address the needs of our community during a tough time of the year for many nonprofits. While the needs of their clients and programs may rise in the summer, giving is often down. You can participate by visiting www.summershareCLT.org and making an in-kind or monetary donation to support LSSP’s mission of ensuring a full measure of justice for those in need.

Running today until July 26, #summershareCLT only lasts two weeks, so visit www.summershareCLT.org now to make a donation or purchase an item from LSSP’s Amazon Wish List. Then spread the word and encourage friends, family, neighbors and coworkers to join you in supporting us and the entire nonprofit community.

Give to support Access to Justice in our community.

We’re asking Charlotte and beyond to consider supporting Access to Justice for #summershareCLT. By giving an in-kind or monetary donation, you’re helping us serve domestic violence survivors in search of safety, disabled children in need of medical care and families in danger of homelessness.

Watch our videos to learn more about our needs this summer:

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– Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to help us spread the word about #summershareCLT.

Shop our Give Shop or donate to Legal Services of Southern Piedmont July 13-26.

Thank you for your support of access to justice!

 

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SCOTUS Affordable Care Act Ruling Benefits Thousands in Mecklenburg County

ACA updateThe recent King v. Burwell decision in the Supreme Court of the U.S. has affirmed to more than 458,000 North Carolinians, many of whom reside in Mecklenburg County and signed up with the help of a Legal Services of Southern Piedmont Navigator, that they will continue receiving financial help to afford their coverage through the ACA Health Insurance Marketplace. This is critical because 93% of N.C.’s marketplace enrollees get financial help to purchase health coverage with an average tax credit of $300 a month.

“The decision is a victory for thousands in our community who finally have access to quality health coverage because of the ACA and can now be assured that they will continue to have the opportunity to access affordable coverage with ongoing financial help,” LSSP staff attorney and Navigator Madison Hardee says. “Now we can focus on helping even more North Carolinians understand their options and access health care. At LSSP, we recognize that many of the most vulnerable in our community are still without health insurance, and we will continue to push for the expansion of Medicaid.”

 

LSSP Navigators provide free, unbiased advice to the residents of Mecklenburg County, helping families and individuals choose plans that are best for them within the health insurance marketplace implemented under the Affordable Care Act.
To schedule an appointment with a local Navigator, please contact the statewide appointment hotline at 1-855-733-3711.

 

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Summer Clerks & Interns 2015

 

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We recently welcomed a great group of summer clerks and interns into the LSSP office. We’re so glad to have them!

From left to right:
– Itané Coleman of UNC Greensboro
– Melodie Pellot-Hernández of UNC School of Law
– Correll Kennedy of Wake Forest University School of Law
– Kristin Smith of Wake Forest University School of Law
– Ivana Hughes of The University of Alabama School of Law
– Abigail Henderson of UNC School of Law

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Memorial Day 2015

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This Memorial Day, we celebrate the victory of a LSSP client, the widow of a WWII veteran, who was recently awarded the recognition that her husband’s sacrifice had honorably earned.

Mr. Adams* was a WWII Army veteran when he married Mrs. Adams. Though he spoke very little about his time in the war, Mrs. Adams knew he had once served in Japan. At the age of 66, Mr. Adams died after a yearlong struggle against stomach cancer. Years later, Mrs. Adams learned about LSSP’s Veterans Legal Services Project and asked for help in finding out more about her husband’s service. Her attorney at LSSP wondered if Mr. Adams had been among the more than 150,000 “atomic veterans” who had experienced high levels of radiogenic exposure while serving in Japan. However, his records had been destroyed in a fire at the National Personnel Records Center, so his service location was not apparent. After much investigation, research and correspondence with the VA, the LSSP attorney discovered that Mr. Adams had in fact served in a high radiation area in Japan soon after the atomic bomb was dropped, and his cancer was among the types recognized as service-related. Because of this discovery, Mr. Adams’ sacrifice to his country was finally recognized and Mrs. Adams is now receiving the widow’s benefits for which she had been eligible for more than two decades.

Our gratitude and respect goes out to our country’s service members and veterans for the sacrifices they have made.

Learn more about LSSP’s Veterans Legal Services Project.

*Name has been changed to protect identity

 

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National Volunteer Week 2015

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National Volunteer Week is April 12-18, 2015, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to recognize some of our current and recent volunteers who have helped us out in a variety of ways this year, like serving as volunteer Health Insurance Marketplace Navigators, volunteering as interpreter/translators for clients, helping our growing Safe Child Immigrant Project with administrative tasks and more! We are so thankful for our generous and dedicated volunteers! Below are some of the volunteers who have been a great help to us recently. From our entire LSSP staff, thank you to all of our volunteers!

Health Insurance Marketplace Navigator Volunteers

Kriss Anne Carlstrom

Emily Sigmon

Lori-Ann Green

Lauren Greth

Janet Hudson

Nicholas Loveluck

Fred Saxine

John Scherr

Mary Allen Watson

Immigrant Justice Program Volunteers

Daniela Jaramillo Aguirre

Luz Aveleyra

Karen Jimenez

Melissa Li Voti

Arthur Minasyan

Megan Mintac

Blanca Rivas

Volunteer Interpreter/Translators

Rosalinda Disch

Gelianny Esponda La Rosa

Aura Lawson-Alonso

Anita Matlock-Murphy

Yvonne Santiago

Monica Thomas

Michael Villalobos

 Pro Bono Program Volunteers

Chris Hsu

Anita Zarey

 

 

 

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2014 Pro Bono Honor Roll

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Our 2014 Pro Bono Honor Roll is up! Congratulations and thank you to all of our dedicated pro bono attorneys! Each of you has played a key role in helping LSSP and Legal Aid of North Carolina-Charlotte provide access to justice for people in need in our community.

View the Honor Roll here.

Learn how you can become involved in the Access to Justice Pro Bono Partners Program.

 

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Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service

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LSSP was honored to be a part of today’s Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service with the recognition of LSSP’s Equal Justice Works AmeriCorps justice Fellows at the event!

_MG_8329 copyMayor Dan Clodfelter spoke at the event, recognizing the AmeriCorps members in the Charlotte community: “Our city has benefited from your dedication. Share your work with others so that they come to know what you mean to Charlotte.”

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LSSP Safe Child Immigrant Project Fellow Atenas Burrola spoke at the event about the work of the Equal Justice Works AmeriCorps justice Fellows in helping unaccompanied children as they move through the Charlotte Immigration Court.

 

 

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Justice for All Luncheon 2015

Justice For All event

View more photos from the event here.

Local legal aid nonprofits Legal Services of Southern Piedmont (LSSP) and Legal Aid of North Carolina-Charlotte (LANC) hosted their ninth annual Justice for All Luncheon March 12, 2015 at The Westin Charlotte with keynote speaker Chief Justice of the N.C. Supreme Court  Mark Martin, chair of the N.C. Equal Access to Justice Commission, to highlight the need for and the work of ensuring access to justice for the Charlotte area’s low-income community.

More than 600 guests heard addresses by Martin and civil legal aid and local bar leaders, stressing the importance of serving low-income families and individuals whose basic human rights are threatened by their inability to pay for legal representation in civil legal matters. Attendees heard the stories of North Carolinians protected from violence, homelessness and chronic illness through the work of these organizations and their partners.

“Among the most pressing challenges facing our justice system today is the delivery of legal services to people of modest means,” Martin said at the event. “Unlike in criminal cases, there is no constitutional right to court-appointed counsel for indigent parties in civil cases. It is in these civil cases that legal aid programs play a vital role in providing legal services to individuals who otherwise would not be able to afford an attorney.”

LSSP’s legal work focuses on helping people in the Charlotte-area meet their basic human needs, ensuring that low-income children, families and the disabled have access to quality health care and benefits; preserving income and protecting financial stability of low-income families; and providing targeted legal assistance for people with special needs such as children, elderly and disabled persons, immigrants, veterans, and people living with HIV/AIDS.

LANC-Charlotte seeks to protect victims of domestic violence; help workers remove barriers to employment; preserve homes, automobiles and other essential properties that are subject to seizure and sale; and help tenants prevent homelessness by preventing unlawful evictions and helping them get necessary repairs for safe and habitable housing.

Sponsors for the event were Bank of America, Duke Energy and Hunton & Williams LLP.

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