Civil legal aid programs extend ‘justice for all’ to Maine’s most vulnerable

Pine Tree Legal Assistance is such a lifeline, but its federal funding source is imperiled by budget cuts.

Op-Ed (Maine)

Kevin Hancock, Nan Heald
Portland Press Herald (Maine)
June 5, 2017

Tags: Funding: Federal

Organizations mentioned/involved: Legal Services Corporation (LSC), Pine Tree Legal Assistance (PTLA) (Maine)


From the beginning, the people living in our country have valued the concept of justice. The Iroquois Confederacy’s Great Law of Peace (which inspired portions of the U.S. Constitution) included the principle of righteousness, meaning people must treat each other fairly: “Each individual must have a strong sense of justice, must treat people as equals and must enjoy equal protection under the Great Law.” In the preamble to the Constitution, the phrase “to establish justice” is listed before “provide for the common defense,” a statement about priorities that is often overlooked.