Public Interest News Digest from PSJD

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Here is the last weekly News Digest from PSJD!

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Happy Friday! And Happy Spring to you!

Spotlight on Outstanding Public Servants: If you know someone we should honor, drop me a line.

Here are the week’s headlines:

  • Quinnipiac University School of Law’s Civil Justice Clinic receives $5,000 AT&T grant;
  • WY organizations partner to increase legal aid;
  • DC legal services groups awarded $3.4 million;
  • MO AG sues fake legal aid;
  • Legal Aid Ontario tackles access to justice in family law;
  • Wake Forest Law helps cancer patients;
  • ABA stipend available for law students working with the homeless this summer;
  • Spotlight on Public Service Servants: ABA’s ProBAR celebrates 25 years;
  • Super Music Bonus! This week – a video bonus.

The summaries:

March 15, 2014 - “The Quinnipiac University School of Law’s Civil Justice Clinic has received a $5,000 grant from AT&T Connecticut in support of its pro bono legal services work in the community. This is the third year that the clinic has received funding through the AT&T Excellence in Pro Bono Legal Service Award and Fellowship. The funding provides a stipend to a student fellow who spends 10 hours a week working in the clinic, supervising other law students and researching ways to expand the scope of the clinic’s work. In the Civil Justice Clinic, law students work under the supervision of full-time faculty members Sarah Russell and Kevin Barry, representing low-income individuals who cannot afford counsel, and work on public policy projects to benefit disadvantaged communities.” (The Courant)

March 15, 2014 – “The Wyoming State Bar announced that it will partner with the Wyoming Center for Legal Aid on an initiative called ‘I’ll Do One.’ The goal of the initiative is to encourage lawyers licensed in Wyoming to commit to at least one pro bono case.” Attorneys who want to volunteer should go to www.wyomingbar.org. (Casper Journal)

March 17, 2014 – “Twenty legal services projects across the District of Columbia will receive more than $3.4 million this year in publicly funded grants. The annual Access to Justice Grants are funded by the D.C. Council and distributed by the D.C. Bar Foundation.” “The foundation awarded approximately $250,000 more in grants this year than in 2013. The single largest grant, $589,500, went to a joint project by Bread for the City and the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia that provides in-court legal services to clients in landlord and tenant matters.” “This is the eighth year the D.C. Council has funded grants for local legal service organizations. The D.C. Bar Foundation also makes a set of separate grants each year based on money it raises from attorneys and the Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts program.” (Legal Times)

March 18, 2014 – “Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster filed a lawsuit on Friday against a Florida-based legal services company that allegedly misled Missourians by claiming it was affiliated with state Legal Aid offices. Yoram Rozenberg, doing business as Legal Aid and The Legal Aid Society, allegedly advertised to Missouri consumers that the businesses were associated with Legal Services of Southern Missouri when that was not the case. Legal Services of Southern Missouri serves low-income and elderly citizens, typically with no charge. Rozenberg allegedly took payments from at least one Missouri consumer for legal work that was not performed by a licensed Missouri attorney. Rozenberg’s businesses allegedly advertised in the Springfield phone books using a local phone number and falsely indicated affiliation with Legal Services of Southern Missouri.” The suit seeks restitution and a bar against Rozenberg doing business in Missouri. (Legal NewsLine)

March 19, 2014 – “Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) is developing a slate of programs and services to address the unmet legal needs of unrepresented family litigants as part of a larger, long-term strategy to improve access to justice for low-income Ontarians. ‘Research shows that as many as 50 per cent of people in the family justice system try to solve their problems on their own because of limited available resources,’ says John McCamus, Chair of LAO. ‘Thanks to $30 million in additional provincial funding, LAO is in a position to expand on our current family services, while dedicating new resources to clients with family law needs.'” Currently, LAO has 15 family law projects in development which make use of the additional provincial funding. LAO will continue consulting with stakeholders on avenues for resolving family law disputes. (Digital Journal)

March 19, 2014 – “A new partnership between Wake Forest University School of Law and Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center will connect cancer patients in need of legal assistance with more than 40 law students participating in the school’s pro bono program. Patients at the Comprehensive Cancer Center will be able to receive free legal assistance in areas such as advanced directives and other medical legal services, with the students supervised by attorneys from Wake Forest Baptist and Wall, Esleeck and Babcock in Winston-Salem.” (The Business Journal)

March 20, 2014 – Law students interning with an organization that works with homeless clients can apply for a stipend. The Curtin Justice Fund Legal Internship Program is seeking motivated law student interns to apply for stipends available for the Summer 2014 Program. The Program will pay a $2,500 stipend to three law school students who spend the summer months working for a bar association or legal services program designed to prevent homelessness or assist homeless or indigent clients or their advocates. The application deadline is Monday, March 31, 2014.

Spotlight on Outstanding Public Servants: The South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project (ProBAR) is a project of the American Bar Association that provides legal information, pro se assistance and pro bono representation to thousands of immigrants and asylum-seekers detained in remote South Texas each year by the United States government. Congratulations on 25 years of great work, and here is to many more!!! Their celebration video is our Super Video Bonus for this week.

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