CONTACT PERSON: VALERIE S. WILLARD
PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
| OCTOBER 13, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Chief Justice Bernette Joshua Johnson, on behalf of the Louisiana Supreme Court, recently signed an order establishing the Louisiana Access to Justice Commission (ATJ Commission). The mission of the ATJ Commission is to assure continuity of policy and purpose in the collaboration between the Louisiana State Bar Association (LSBA), the courts and the civil justice community, in furtherance of the goal to ensure that all Louisiana citizens have access to equal justice under the law.
According to Chief Justice Johnson, “Recognizing the importance of civil equal justice to the proper functioning of our democracy, and the need for leadership and effective coordination of civil justice efforts in our state, the Supreme Court was pleased to support the outstanding work of the LSBA’s Access to Justice Committees and to encourage the continuation of that ongoing work with the creation of this Commission. Through the ATJ Commission, the Supreme Court and the LSBA will work in concert, promoting effective and economical civil legal services delivery for low and moderate income citizens of Louisiana.”
The ATJ Commission will operate as a standing committee of the LSBA consisting of 21 voting members appointed by the President of the LSBA and the Chief Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court. Members will represent diverse ethnic, gender and geographic communities of Louisiana. Lawyers serving on the Commission will have demonstrated a commitment to access to justice issues and will reflect the various types of legal aid providers in Louisiana.
Some of the goals of the Commission include: educating the people of Louisiana about the importance of equal access to justice and the challenges many face in effectively accessing the civil justice system in Louisiana; developing a strong statewide civil legal services delivery system by licensed attorneys; developing and recommending initiatives intended to maximize resources and funding for access to justice in civil matter and to encourage efficient use of the available resources; recommending initiatives to reduce systemic barriers to access to justice, including enhancing resources for self-represented litigants; and encouraging members of the bar to provide pro bono legal services as a regular component of their practices.
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