HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. – State Rep. Fred Crespo, D-Hoffman Estates, is highlighting the announcement of funding for legal services in his district through the Illinois Access to Justice Program.
“The Access to Justice Program plays a critical role in ensuring access to legal counsel, education, employment opportunities and immigration services for communities disproportionately affected by incarceration, family separation and divestment,” said Crespo. “The unfortunate truth is that communities of color are constantly faced with violence and discrimination, but have limited access to the services they need to seek justice and prosperity. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to make sure that residents across Illinois can receive the vital resources that this program can help provide.”
The Access to Justice Program, administered by West Side Justice Center and The Resurrection Project, works with organizations across Illinois to provide legal services for immigration, reentry after incarceration and record expungement, as well as mentorship, education and other resources. Crespo spearheaded the program in 2019, and helped lay the legislative framework to provide funding.
This year, several organizations in the northwest suburbs will be receiving funds in an effort to build capacity for legal resources outside of Chicago. The organizations that were recently awarded grants include Administer Justice, Alianza Hispanoamericana, Centro de Información, Partners for Our Communities and Legal Aid Chicago operating out of Hanover Township.
“Finding these resources outside of Chicago is not easy, but the expansion of this program will help residents in our community and across Illinois receive the justice they deserve,” said Crespo. “I’m grateful for the work being done by our local community-based organizations, and thanks to the Access to Justice Program, they will have the ability to strengthen their infrastructure and expand their outreach and services for our most vulnerable populations.”
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