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The November/December Issue  

In this month’s issue of the A2J Dispatch, we learn about how A2JC is gearing up for the 2023 legislative session, we spotlight and express a heartfelt thank you to our volunteers who give their time and talent to advance access to justice issues, we explore how language barriers are preventing access to mental health care for certain children, and we learn about new legislation that looks to reform unfair medical debt practices and protect consumers.  

A2J Commission News

  • A2JC Executive Director, Reena Shah, joined A2J Commission EDs from LA, OK, DC, MA and AZ on December 12, 2022 to present to the newly re-established Office of Access to Justice in the U.S. Department of Justice on national priorities developed and agreed upon by 40 Commissions across the country. The national priorities shared include: Convening and Leadership; Collaboration and Innovation; Data and Evaluation; and Resource Development for civil legal aid organizations, pro bono programs and A2J Commissions. 
  • The 125th Anniversary Thought Leadership Initiative, which explores the legal profession’s role and responsibility in advancing access to justice, among other topics, will host the Spark Series Capstone Program on January 20, 2023. Seats are limited, register today
  • MSBA Day, which is a joint lobby day between MSBA and A2JC, allows us to share A2JC priorities with the legislature. We’ll be back in person in Annapolis on January 24, 2023. Register here to lend your voice to our advocacy efforts!
  • Thank you to the 300 attorneys who filled out the Affordable Law Task Force Survey! 

A2J Volunteer Spotlight

A2JC expresses a heartfelt thank you to volunteers who give of their time and talent to advance our work! We would not be able to achieve as much as we do without you!

This month, we spotlight Dr. Carolyn Lichtenstein, a retired professional who holds a Ph.D. in statistics and worked for 30 years as a data analyst, statistician, and project manager at companies who served as federal contractors to support the work of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Center for Mental Health Services and the Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service.

“I wanted a volunteer position in which I could contribute my statistical and data management skills to improve racial and economic equity. Working with the A2JC has been very rewarding, and I think the data projects I have worked on will be useful to those working in the access to justice field.” 

Dr. Lichtenstein has been instrumental in enabling A2JC to develop civil justice data tools, including the Civil Justice Data Dashboard, Story Map and Housing Data Dashboard. Dr. Lichtenstein also helps A2JC conduct and analyze surveys and support the work of A2JC’s Legal Technology Committee. Read more about her experience here.

Tips from Maryland Judiciary’s Access to Justice Department

We are pleased to offer recurring content from the Maryland Judiciary’s Access to Justice Department as part of the A2J Dispatch. 

  • The Maryland Judiciary provides a comprehensive array of videos on legal topics to assist litigants navigating the courts. The My Laws, My Courts, My Maryland video library includes over 120 titles on a broad range of topics including civil matters likely to be handled by self-represented litigants. Most videos are also captioned and accompanied by a Tip Sheet, transcripts in English and Spanish, and links to other relevant material. Videos can also be found embedded in relevant Legal Help pages on the Maryland Judiciary website, www.mdcourts.gov.  

Local A2J News

National A2J News