2019 Disaster Relief Grants Awarded to LSC Grantees

December 17, 2019

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that it is awarding 12 disaster relief grants totaling $14,250,000 to legal aid organizations in Alaska, Arkansas, California, Florida, Iowa, Micronesia, Nebraska, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

The grants will fund projects that marshal additional legal aid lawyers to assist disaster providers, mobilize pro bono attorneys, and integrate legal aid into other disaster services.

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

The funded projects are:

ALASKA
Alaska Legal Services Corporation ($279,252) 

ARKANSAS
Center for Arkansas Legal Services ($500,000)

CALIFORNIA 
Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County ($450,000)

FORIDA
Legal Services of North Florida ($3,000,000)

IOWA
Iowa Legal Aid ($1,000,000)

MICRONESIA 
Micronesian Legal Services, Inc. ($1,200,000)

NEBRASKA 
Legal Aid of Nebraska ($1,250,000)

NORTH CAROLINA 
Legal Aid of North Carolina ($4,836,024)

OHIO 
Legal Aid of Western Ohio ($350,000) 

OKLAHOMA
Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma ($650,000)

Oklahoma Indian Legal Services ($234,724)

TEXAS
Texas RioGrande Legal Aid ($500,000)


 

LSC Awards $279,252 Disaster Relief Grant to Alaska Legal Services Corporation

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Alaska Legal Services Corporation will receive $279,252 to help low-income Alaskans with disaster-related legal needs. 

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Alaska Legal Services Corporation to focus on housing issues facing renters and homeowners in the region affected by the 2018 earthquake. The organization will help low-income Alaskans avoid homelessness and home repair fraud, address landlord/tenant issues, and resolve other legal issues arising from the earthquake.   

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the Alaska congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator Lisa Murkowski: “Alaska Legal Services has been one of America’s leading legal service providers for years, offering invaluable, pro bono support for individuals across the state, particularly in rural communities. Following the 7.1 magnitude earthquake last year, I was encouraged to see Alaska Legal Services join other partners in providing free legal advice to those in need. And now, with this new funding, I look forward to seeing the good work they’ll do to further assist Alaskans who were impacted by the disaster and are still trying to navigate the road to recovery.”  

Senator Dan Sullivan: “Even as the earth was still shaking from the 7.0 magnitude earthquake, Alaskans immediately got to work to rebuild and help their neighbors rebuild. Alaskans are resilient and generous, however, some are going to fall victim to fraud, have problems with rental disputes, and face other issues for which they need legal help. Working together, Senator Murkowski, Congressman Young and I were able to include the Alaska earthquake as a category of natural disasters that triggers federal funding to help Alaskans in need. I’m gratified that Alaska Legal Services—which has done such good, important work for Alaskans for decades—will be receiving those funds to help individuals and families that may need legal assistance in their earthquake recovery efforts.” 

Representative Don Young (AK-At Large): “Alaskans continue recovering from last year’s earthquake that impacted countless families across our great state. The disaster-assistance grant awarded to Alaska Legal Services is welcome news for renters, homeowners, and others who continue working hard to get back on track. I am grateful for the work Alaska Legal Services does for so many in our state, and wish them continued success in the future.” 

Alaska Legal Services Corporation is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $500,000 Disaster Relief Grant to the Center for Arkansas Legal Services

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that the Center for Arkansas Legal Services will receive $500,000 to help low-income Arkansans with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow the Center for Arkansas Legal Services to provide direct representation to survivors of the 2019 floods that affected Arkansas, Conway, Crawford, Desha, Faulkner, Jefferson, Lincoln, Logan, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Sebastian, and Yell counties. It will develop a dedicated disaster relief hotline, provide in-person survivor and community outreach, and expand pro bono recruitment for disaster-related legal cases. 

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the Arkansas congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator John Boozman: “Arkansans unfortunately know all too well the devastating impact flooding has on their homes and communities. This funding will deliver more opportunities for individuals and families in need of legal services to help them recover from these natural disasters.” 

Representative Steve Womack (AR-3): “Flooding devastated the Third District earlier this year, and our communities are still working to fully recover and rebuild. This grant will provide resources to help families in need get back on their feet and move forward. Natural disasters impact people on many different levels, and I’m pleased that Arkansans will have increased access to services that will aid in their disaster recovery.” 

The Center for Arkansas Legal Services is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $450,000 Disaster Relief Grant to Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County will receive $450,000 to help low-income Californians with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County to help low-income survivors recover from the Woolsey Fire by providing legal assistance and conducting outreach events in affected communities. The organization will partner with disaster agencies and other LSC-funded legal services organizations in California.   

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the California congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator Kamala D. Harris: “Legal Services Corporation plays an important role in ensuring that every American, regardless of their circumstance, can rely on the promise of equal justice under law. I am proud that the Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County’s disaster relief work is being supported by LSC, and will reach wildfire survivors in need of legal assistance.” 

Representative Judy Chu (CA-27): “Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County has been such an important partner in my work for the San Gabriel Valley, from helping with Social Security to disaster relief and assistance. That’s why I am so pleased they have received this significant grant to support and continue their work. Disaster recovery would be impossible without partners like NLSLAC, and I’m proud to support their work.”  

Representative Linda T. Sánchez (CA-38): "We've seen a record number of wildfires wreak havoc on communities across California recently. The road to recovery is long and many working families struggle returning to normalcy after a wildfire. When Congress considered supplemental disaster relief legislation, I voted to help communities recover. Now, I'm glad to see organizations like the Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County receive funding that will help people rebuild their lives after a disaster."

Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $3 Million Disaster Relief Grant to Legal Services of North Florida

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Legal Services of North Florida will receive $3 million to help low-income Floridians with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Legal Services of North Florida to provide direct legal representation to survivors of Hurricane Michael by increasing its disaster legal services staff and expanding its outreach to disaster-affected areas. It will also enhance its pro bono recruitment efforts to increase access to services.   

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the Florida congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator Marco Rubio: “It’s great to see that Legal Services of North Florida will be receiving this important grant which will go toward assisting survivors of Hurricane Michael by expanding LSNF’s outreach to disaster-affected areas, expanding disaster legal services staffing, and enhancing pro bono services for victims. I am proud to have supported this funding in the FY19 Disaster Supplemental Appropriations bill.” 

Representative Al Lawson Jr. (FL-5): "These funds will help many of our neighbors who are still recovering from the devastation caused by Hurricane Michael, navigate the legal and regulatory challenges they face to rebuild their homes and businesses. These funds have been a long time coming." 

 Legal Services of North Florida is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $1 Million Disaster Relief Grant to Iowa Legal Aid

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Iowa Legal Aid will receive $1 million to help low-income Iowans with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Iowa Legal Aid to help low-income survivors of the 2019 floods with legal issues related to foreclosures, contractor scams, real estate land contracts, quiet title, eviction, rental repairs, rental contracts, flood insurance, FEMA denials, and bankruptcy. The organization will train partners in the disaster response community to identify legal problems and refer disaster survivors to Iowa Legal Aid for assistance. It will also recruit and train volunteer attorneys to respond to disasters to increase its capacity to assist survivors. 

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the Iowa congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator Chuck Grassley: “When there’s a major disaster, many Iowans need legal assistance to help with any number of problems, from contracts to scams to title issues. I’m glad that Iowa Legal Aid received these funds as a result of legislation I supported earlier this year to help with flood-related recovery throughout Iowa.” 

Representative Dave Loebsack (IA-2): “In the aftermath of a disaster, there are many reasons someone may need assistance with a legal issue, such as foreclosure, contractor scams, eviction, rental repairs, flood insurance, FEMA denials, and bankruptcy cases. That is why I am pleased that Iowa Legal Aid is receiving $1 million in disaster assistance funding to help low-income folks get the legal assistance they need once the immediate disaster is over. No matter your income, you should have access to the necessary legal advice, which is why I am proud to support Iowa Legal Aid and their mission to help people get back on their feet.” 

Iowa Legal Aid is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $1.2 Million Disaster Relief Grant to Micronesian Legal Services, Inc.

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Micronesian Legal Services, Inc. will receive $1,200,000 to help low-income people throughout Micronesia with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Micronesian Legal Services to create a team to help low-income survivors of Super Typhoon Yutu and Typhoon Mangkhut by providing direct legal services, conducting community education, and collaborating with other disaster-services partners. The organization will also implement technology enhancements to better serve the affected population. 

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

House Delegate Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan (NMI) congratulated Micronesian Legal Services on the award:

“Micronesian Legal Services has been central to the response to Typhoon Mangkhut and Super Typhoon Yutu, helping survivors through the legal complexities of obtaining federal aid,” he said. “And, as was the case for so many recovery workers, the people of Micronesian Legal Services were helping others, while repairing their own homes and lives and recovering from the extensive damage to their offices. Making sure the Marianas was fully eligible for assistance in this year’s disaster appropriation was at the top of my agenda for 2019. It is good to see the money Congress appropriated in June now reaching those we intended to help.” 

Micronesian Legal Services is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million. 

LSC Awards $1.25 Million Disaster Relief Grant to Legal Aid of Nebraska

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Legal Aid of Nebraska will receive $1,250,000 to help low-income Nebraskans with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Legal Aid of Nebraska to expand its existing Disaster Relief Project. The organization will provide direct legal services to individuals throughout the state affected by the 2019 floods and bomb cyclone blizzard.

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Senator Deb Fischer congratulated Legal Aid of Nebraska on the award:

“I’m pleased that the Legal Aid of Nebraska has been selected to receive this disaster relief grant,” said Senator Fischer. “I worked to ensure that this spring’s disaster supplemental bill included the funding necessary to help Nebraska rebuild from this year’s flooding. Access to high-quality legal services is an important part of recovery, and this grant will help provide that access to Nebraska communities.” 

Legal Aid of Nebraska is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million. 

LSC Awards $4.8 Million Disaster Relief Grant to Legal Aid of North Carolina

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Legal Aid of North Carolina will receive $4,836,024 to help low-income North Carolinians with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Legal Aid of North Carolina to create three legal teams in Pembroke, Rocky Mount, and Greenville to serve the regions of the state that were most affected by Hurricane Florence. The teams will provide direct legal services to survivors, conduct outreach clinics, and coordinate with other disaster-response partners. 

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the North Carolina congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Representative David Price (NC-4): “I’m pleased that Legal Aid of North Carolina will receive a $4.8 million grant to provide legal services and coordinate support for victims of recent natural disasters. As North Carolina’s only appropriator, I’ve focused on ensuring our state receives the resources needed to recover from major storms and flooding.  It takes years to fully rebuild, and I’m glad Legal Aid of North Carolina will be there to help our citizens navigate the process.”

Representative Mark Walker (NC-6): “We continue to keep our promise by providing valuable assistance to the North Carolinians still rebuilding from some of our most disastrous storms. The millions headed to our state will provide direct legal services to survivors, outreach clinics, and further coordination with other disaster partners. Recovery is a team sport and I could not be prouder of the collaborations with our neighborhoods, organizations, churches, local officials, and the federal government working in partnership to restore our communities.”   

Legal Aid of North Carolina is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $350,000 Disaster Relief Grant to Legal Aid of Western Ohio

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Legal Aid of Western Ohio will receive $350,000 to help low-income Ohioans with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Legal Aid of Western Ohio to develop a Tornado Recovery Project to identify and contact all survivors potentially eligible for legal aid living in the affected regions of western Ohio. The project will provide information on legal rights and available assistance, conduct client intake, offer comprehensive legal help, and work with affected communities to help rebuild housing and restore stability.   

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the Ohio congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator Sherrod Brown: “Every Ohioan should have access to the legal services and representation they need during financial hardships, especially those caused by natural disasters. These funds for Legal Aid of Western Ohio will help ensure Ohioans have the legal assistance to secure housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents and make repairs they need to get back on their feet.”  

Representative Bob Latta (OH-5): “Communities across western Ohio have yet to recover from the tornadoes that devastated homes, schools, and businesses earlier this year. Ohioans need relief, and I am proud that thanks to the Disaster Supplemental Relief Act that I supported in the House, the Legal Aid of Western Ohio will be able to create the Tornado Recovery Project. This project will help restore stability to impacted communities by ensuring survivors are granted the legal resources they need in order to rebuild their lives.” 

Legal Aid of Western Ohio is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million. 

LSC Awards $884,727 in Disaster Relief Grants to Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma and Oklahoma Indian Legal Services

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma will receive $650,000 and Oklahoma Indian Legal Services $234,724 in grant funding to help low-income Oklahomans with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma to conduct targeted outreach to counties affected in 2019 by severe storms, straight-line winds, tornadoes, and flooding. The organization will provide direct legal services to survivors and plans to expand assistance from pro bono lawyers by establishing remote connectivity at four rural sites to allow urban attorneys to assist rural clients. Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma will also establish a virtual law office for urban attorneys to meet online with rural clients.

Oklahoma Indian Legal Services will use its grant to focus on tribal outreach and providing direct legal services to individuals affected in 2019 by severe storms, straight-line winds, tornadoes, and flooding. The organization will hire a new attorney to work with tribal members who require assistance with updated titles that will enable them to apply for disaster assistance from federal, state, and tribal governments. 

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Representative Tom Cole (OK-4) congratulated the organizations on receiving funding:

“I am delighted to hear that the Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma and Oklahoma Indian Legal Services has received a generous disaster-assistance grant,” said Rep. Cole. “This grant will rightly provide survivors of natural disasters in rural areas of the Fourth District the legal services they need. As a co-chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus and a member of the Chickasaw Nation, I am proud to learn of the provision regarding tribal outreach and assistance for tribes in applying for disaster assistance.” 

Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma and Oklahoma Indian Legal Services are two of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

LSC Awards $500,000 Disaster Relief Grant to Texas RioGrande Legal Aid

WASHINGTON – The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) announced today that Texas RioGrande Legal Aid will receive $500,000 to help low-income Texans with disaster-related legal needs.

Earlier this year, Congress passed the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019. The bill provides $19.1 billion in supplemental disaster funds to address damage caused by hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters that occurred from 2017-2019. LSC received $15 million to support the delivery of legal services to individuals affected by disasters.

Legal aid is essential in helping survivors get back on their feet. When disaster strikes a community, the vulnerabilities of low-income people are amplified, and the need for legal assistance becomes even more critical. Survivors need experts who understand the legal issues involved and who can help them secure temporary housing, file insurance claims, replace important legal documents, negotiate with landlords to make necessary repairs, and more.

LSC’s grant will allow Texas RioGrande Legal Aid to provide direct legal assistance to disaster survivors in southeast Texas affected by the severe storms and flooding. The organization will recruit and train pro bono attorneys to better meet survivors’ legal needs. It will also work with community organizations and local disaster-relief agencies to provide legal information at meetings and through media outlets.

“Legal services providers are a critical component of comprehensive disaster relief for survivors facing wrongful evictions, denials of insurance claims and benefits, and consumer scams,” explained LSC President James J. Sandman. “We are grateful to Congress for providing funds to ensure that low-income disaster survivors get the help they need in the aftermath of a disaster.”

Members of the Texas congressional delegation applauded the grant.

Senator John Cornyn: “In the past two years, South Texans have proven their resilience as the region has been devastated by hurricanes, flooding, and storms.  This much-needed relief will be a shot in the arm for Texans in the Rio Grande Valley to aid their ongoing recovery from these tragic events.” 

Rep. Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15): “We cannot control natural disasters, but we can put laws in place to help those affected by them. With this grant, it is my hope that as many disaster survivors as possible receive the legal resources they need. I will continue advocating for the crucial resources American families need after being affected by natural disasters.” 

Texas RioGrande Legal Aid is one of 12 recipients of disaster funding totaling more than $14 million.

Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is an independent nonprofit established by Congress in 1974 to provide financial support for civil legal aid to low-income Americans. The Corporation currently provides funding to 132 independent nonprofit legal aid programs in every state, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories.