Loss of legal services would threaten foundations of democracy

Access to justice is not a Democratic or Republican issue; it is an American value. As the Honorable Learned Hand cautioned, "If we are to keep our democracy, there must be one commandment: Thou shalt not ration justice."

Op-Ed (Colorado)

Julie Reiskin, John Zakhem
Colorado Springs Gazette
May 28, 2017

Tags: Funding: Federal

Organizations mentioned/involved: Colorado Legal Services, Legal Services Corporation (LSC)


Guaranteeing access to justice for everyone is essential to a well-ordered democracy. If low and middle-income people are barred from our court system, they will no longer trust it and the foundation of our democracy is threatened.

While LSC is not the only funding source for civil legal aid, it is the largest and defunding it will wreak chaos in the legal system. Courts are already overwhelmed by the abundance of litigation. If the indigent go unrepresented, court cases are delayed. Businesses and the government will suffer greater inefficiencies and pay higher costs as a result of a bogged-down judicial system.