News Tag: Advocacy


September 14, 2018

mary meg and clientsLocal Challenges, State and National Solutions

Many of the access to justice issues we face in the Chicago area require action on the state or federal level to resolve. Working with many dedicated partners on the local, state and national levels, the CBF’s advocacy and community leadership extends well beyond the borders of Cook County, along with its impact.

A good example […]

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August 31, 2018

justice for youthJustice for Youth Campaign Called Attention to a Budding Crisis

Back in the early 1990’s, the juvenile court and juvenile welfare systems were fighting an increasingly losing battle to protect and care for thousands of abused, neglected or troubled children in Cook County and elsewhere in Illinois. The CBF saw this budding crisis as an opportunity and, in partnership with The Chicago Bar Association, launched […]

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August 17, 2018

legislative group shotWhat’s in a Name?

Many know the CBF works with the courts, the legal community, and pro bono and legal aid organizations to ensure that the courts are user-friendly, accessible, and fair for the increasing number of people navigating the legal system without lawyers. What is less known, however, is that work sometimes takes us to Springfield to advocate for changes in the laws that have made the court system unduly complicated in the first place.

While many changes can be implemented at the court level, others are embedded in the fabric of our laws. Several years ago, the CBF recognized that there was a unique opportunity for us to include these kinds of simplification efforts in our annual advocacy plan. But where to start?

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July 5, 2018

tommy wells aba day awardAdvocacy and Access to Justice

As we celebrate our nation’s birthday, the CBF is reflecting on the legislative advocacy work that has been an integral part of fulfilling our nation’s promise of equal access to justice for all. We look forward to highlighting a number of specific successful initiatives over the course of our 70th Anniversary year.

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April 24, 2018

abab day photoCBF Goes to Washington: Legal Aid Funding, Student Debt and Immigration

Leaders from the CBF again traveled to Washington D.C. earlier this month along with representatives from the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) and American Bar Association as part of the ABA’s annual ABA Day in Washington. Each year, Congress considers legislation and budget issues that impact access to justice, the court system, and the legal profession. That’s why it is vital that leaders in our legal community in Chicago, and elsewhere in Illinois, engage with our members of Congress on important issues impacting access to justice for Illinois residents.

This year we focused our efforts on three important access to justice issues: funding for the Legal Services Corporation, maintaining the Public Service Loan Forgiveness and income-based forgiveness programs as part of broader student debt reforms, and continuation of two proven programs recently suspended by the Department of Justice: legal orientation programs (LOP) for immigrants in detention and help desks in the immigration court in Chicago and elsewhere in the country.

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March 27, 2018

Educational Debt, Public Service Loan Forgiveness on the Agenda for Congress this Spring

As the costs of higher education and the resulting explosion of debt to finance it increasingly weigh on newer lawyers pursuing legal aid, public service and other socially conscious careers in law, it has created whole new challenges for access to justice. The federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program and several income-based repayment (IBR) programs for federally backed student loans have made these legal careers viable for thousands of dedicated lawyers who otherwise would have to take a different path due to the financial challenges.

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November 30, 2017

Groundbreaking Illinois Armed Forces Legal Aid Network Launches

Earlier this month, the Illinois Armed Forces Legal Aid Network officially launched in conjunction with Veterans Day.

The new network was made possible by the Access to Justice Act, one of the CBF’s major legislative initiatives the past few years. The Act provides the framework and funding for a new legal hotline and network of services for Veterans and military families in Illinois.

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September 7, 2017

Support the DREAM Act

President Trump’s decision this week to end the DACA program leaves thousands of young people who have done nothing wrong in legal limbo. These dreamers are making huge contributions to our economy, our communities, and our country. The bipartisan DREAM Act fixes this crucial flaw in our nation’s broken immigration laws by creating a legal path for these young people to gain permanent legal status and continue contributing to their communities. Please contact Senator Durbin and thank him for his leadership in cosponsoring the DREAM Act, and encourage Senator Duckworth and your local Representative in Congress to support the Act (S.1615/H.R. 3440), which promotes our nation’s core values and the rule of law.

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August 24, 2017

Forcible Entry and Detainer No More

Last week, Governor Rauner signed Public Act 100-0173 into law, simplifying the law governing evictions in Illinois by changing the confusing title and archaic language of the Forcible Entry and Detainer Act. The CBA and CBF partnered this year to spearhead this legislative initiative. By changing the name of the Act to the Eviction Act, and changing the similarly confusing name of the order used for evictions from order of possession to eviction order, the eviction process will now be more user-friendly and understandable for tenants and landlords alike.

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July 25, 2017

Take Action: Support LSC Funding

As the FY18 federal budget process continues, the relevant Senate Subcommittee has approved level funding for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) at $385 million. We encourage you to thank Senators Durbin and Duckworth for their strong support and to advocate with your Representative in the House to continue to support full funding for LSC.

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