Blog Post (NATIONAL)
December 2, 2015
READ THE FULL STORY HERE
Tags: Medical-Legal Partnerships
Organizations mentioned/involved: Legal Aid Interagency Roundtable (LAIR), National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership (NCMLP)
President Obama issued a Presidential Memorandum in September establishing the White House Legal Aid Interagency Roundtable, the mandate of which is to “increase the availability of meaningful access to justice for individuals and families and thereby improve the outcomes of an array of Federal programs.”
As it is typically understood today, “access to justice” refers to a movement that aims to create a justice system that delivers outcomes that are fair and accessible to all, regardless of one’s socioeconomic status.
As co-directors of the National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership, we were thrilled by the President’s announcement. What we know from ten years of leading the health care, legal, and public health sectors in an integrated approach to combat the social conditions that negatively affect health, and what the Presidential Memorandum shone light on, is that a lack of access to civil legal aid isn’t just a problem associated with basic fairness and justice; it’s a problem for the health of individuals and communities.