CHLP joined 40+ LGBTQ and allied organizations in a letter to House and Senate Appropriations Committee members expressing strong support for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) against a Trump administration move to remove all funding for LSC from the 2020 budget. For the third year in a row, the president's proposed budget eliminates all requested funding for LSC, which serves nearly 2 million low-income people by providing critical legal representation each year.
“Maintaining funding for LSC is crucial to ensuring that vulnerable communities—including LGBTQ people—have equal access to justice,” the letter states. Surveys demonstrate that provision of free legal services that help people living with HIV to secure essential disability and other public benefits, remain employed, and access stable housing reduces barriers to regular health care. As a result, overall health care costs decrease because people are receiving care and services that maintain their health.
LSC is an independent nonprofit established by Congress in 1974 to provide financial support for civil legal aid to low-income Americans. It promotes equal access to justice by providing funding to 133 independent non-profit legal aid programs in every state, serving thousands of low-income individuals, children, families, seniors, and veterans in 813 offices in every congressional district.
LSC enjoys broad bipartisan support and is optimistic that, as in year’s past, Congress will approve full funding in spite of the White House proposal to defund.