Thank you for calling attention to the gaps in civil legal aid in our state and this community. I appreciate Kris Goddard’s letter to the editor suggesting the formation of a non-profit to increase funding. While more can and should be done, there are a few organizations already working to fill the gap.
The Campaign for Equal Justice is a statewide nonprofit that raises private funds for civil legal aid, supporting local organizations like Thurston County Volunteer Legal Services (TCVLS). Recently, the Campaign had a fundraising event in Olympia attended by area lawyers and judges. For those interested, there’s still time to give – donate at: c4ej.org.
While the civil legal aid community depends on broad financial support, we also appreciate the thousands of hours of personal time donated by local attorneys. TCVLS is a nonprofit that organizes local attorneys to provide civil legal advice to low income residents. Our volunteer attorneys come from a variety of sources --- solo practitioners and law firms, the Office of the Attorney General, retired judges and lawyers. Already in 2015, nearly 100 Thurston County attorneys have already donated their personal time to advise 1,062 individuals and families.
TCVLS also appreciates the funding we receive through the Thurston County Bar Association, the Government Lawyers Bar Association, and the Capitol Chapter of Washington Women Lawyers. We welcome additional support via our website which is set up to accept donations: tcvls.org.
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Rachael Langen Lundmark, Olympia (Ecxecutive Director, Thurston County Volunteer Legal Services)