Southeast Louisiana Legal Services (SLLS) recently established a 50th Anniversary Advisory Committee to assist its Board in commemorating the agency’s 50th anniversary milestone. The Honorable Chief Justice Bernette Joshua Johnson, a former civil legal aid attorney early in her career, is the 50th Anniversary Advisory Committee Honorary Chair. Darrel Papillion, Immediate Past President of the Louisiana State Bar Association and a partner in Walters, Papillion, Thomas, Cullens LLC, serves as Co-Chair along with R. Patrick Vance, senior partner at Jones Walker and a former SLLS Board President. The Committee is composed of distinguished judges, prominent attorneys, business leaders, foundation heads, and law school deans. HH&K Partner Steve Herman is an SLLS Committee Member.
The committee will plan a year of activities around the theme “Justice is Golden”, beginning with a Kick-Off event on November 8, 2017 at the Louisiana Supreme Court that will feature a panel discussion on the “Future of Civil Legal Aid” from 4-5:30 p.m. followed by a reception. During the 50th Anniversary year from Nov. 2017 to Oct. 2018, an event will be held at each of Louisiana’s four law schools. The Committee will also work to increase awareness of the importance of civil legal aid in improving lives and in strengthening communities. A recent Economic Impact Study released by the Louisiana Access to Justice Commission found that for every $1 invested in civil legal aid, there is $8.73 of social return on investment through immediate and long-term benefits and taxpayer savings.
About Southeast Louisiana Legal Services (SLLS)
SLLS is Louisiana’s largest non-profit provider of free civil legal aid with 100 employees in six offices covering 22 parishes in Southeast Louisiana. Offices are located in Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Harvey, Hammond, Covington, and Houma. Its mission is to achieve justice for low-income people through direct case work, advocacy, and community legal education. It offers free legal representation in disaster law, family law, domestic violence, landlord-tenant, foreclosure, public benefits, consumer law, and more. SLLS receives significant funding from the Legal Services Corporation, the Louisiana Bar Foundation, and the United Way. In 2016, SLLS helped 27,000 vulnerable Louisiana citizens obtain or preserve over $22.3 million in economic benefits. It served 13,050 people in community legal clinics and education events. SLLS provided self-help resources, referral, and legal information to another 143,000 people through its public website www.LouisianaLawhelp.org.