Committee Reports

Testimony by City Bar President Debra Raskin at the Chief Judge’s Hearing on Civil Legal Services

SUMMARY

City Bar President Debra L. Raskin provided testimony last week at Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman’s Hearing on Civil Legal Services. The testimony applauded Chief Judge Lippman’s and former Chief Administrative Judge Prudenti’s outstanding leadership over many years to the cause of providing civil legal services and urged the Commission to stay the course towards its original goal of a $100 million increase in annual civil legal services funding. Ms. Raskin highlighted the work of the City Bar Justice Center as a model for leveraging the efforts and resources of the legal community with legal services funding to increase access to justice for low-income New Yorkers. The Justice Center helps about 25,000 New Yorkers annually with civil legal problems and last year closed approximately 13,000 cases and engaged approximately 1,400 pro bono attorneys to work on cases and conduct community trainings. Included in those numbers are the thousands of New Yorkers who rely on the Legal Hotline, which has been expanded to include limited scope or unbundled legal services to callers.