Legal Aid of North Carolina is closing 3 offices, including Henderson, which was the closest office to Warren County where we have been working. They are eliminating 30 positions in addition to the office closures. Legal Aid was already turning away half of the qualified potential clients as it was.
Despite more people falling into poverty, and more need for legal aid, the organization had to make tough decisions. They chose to close offices in rural counties. This isn’t because they are not needed, it’s because they had to make strategic choices based on where they could most easily reach the most people.
There are likely many more cuts ahead, as the recent federal budget cuts are predicted to cause another 26% reduction in funding.
This is why R2JNC is needed more than ever. We are going to work with Legal Aid and other organizations to make sure their programs stretch as far as they can. Hopefully we will see a change in funding where Legal Aid will be able to reach more folk who need their help.