Survivors rely on legal aid to break cycle of abuse

All of us have a role to play in ensuring that survivors such as Lucy get legal help to escape their abusers so that tragic domestic violence deaths can be prevented.

Op-Ed (Ohio)

Molly Crabtree
Columbus Dispatch
October 25, 2018

Tags: Domestic Violence, Funding: Private/Foundation

Organizations mentioned/involved: Legal Aid Society of Columbus


One crucial but often overlooked means of prevention is how much of a difference legal help can make for a person in an abusive relationship. It is a lifeline for a domestic-violence survivor who often faces legal needs such as a protection order, divorce, child custody and child support.

Under the constitution, Ohioans are guaranteed a lawyer for criminal matters, but not for cases handled in civil court, even when those cases involve violence. If you are the victim of violence, you have to navigate the complexities of the court on your own. That is not only unfair, it runs counter to what we pledge: a nation with liberty and justice for all. Our community can and should do more to support civil legal aid for domestic-violence survivors.