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Archive for Friday, November 30, 2012

Kansas Legal Services to close Lawrence branch

November 30, 2012

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State budget cuts are forcing Kansas Legal Services, which provides help to low-income Kansans, to close its branch office in Lawrence at the end of this year, officials said Friday.

"We will strive to minimize the impact felt on the community, but know that our diminished presence will mean a greater strain on the courts and the bar," said Bethany Roberts, managing attorney.

"We are committed to trying to locate additional funding and hope to reopen the office at some point in the future," she said.

In 2011, Kansas Legal Services assisted 1,673 clients in Douglas and Jefferson counties. The KLS office in Topeka will remain open and available to provide services to clients in Douglas and Jefferson counties, Roberts said.

Roberts said KLS lost contracts with the state to help move people from state assistance to federal assistance. Two of those contracts were worth a total of nearly $1 million, she said. Last year, KLS closed a field office in Garden City because of a lack of funding.

Lawrence attorney David J. Brown was disappointed to hear about the closing, and he commended the work the local branch has done over the years.

"The attorneys for Kansas Legal Services have been some of the most dedicated to helping people in need that I’ve seen. The cases they handle are messy and difficult because their clients’ needs are so great," he said. "Loss of this service will have a negative impact on low-income families and children in our community."

Comments

David Holroyd 2 years ago

Of course, Brown had to throw in "children". Why can't these attorneys, if so concerned continue to help and volunteer their time?

Are they really concerned or more concerned about funding?

Brian Hall 2 years ago

You can only volunteer so much of your time but you still need a paying job to survive.

youngjayhawk 2 years ago

So unfortunate and sad for the Lawrence community.

patkindle 2 years ago

i think most all attorneys are crooks, and one step above politicans but they already discount their services heavlly to work for these low income folk

Larry Sturm 2 years ago

Don't ever do away with anything to help the rich. except taxes. take everything away from children and the poor.

Centerville 2 years ago

There are lots of law firms devoted entirely to finagling Social Security disability payments for their clients. And, Legal Aid doesn't exactly reach out to help with anything but that. The standard answer to "Have you tried Legal Aid?" is "Yea, but they didn't want to help me."

Charles L Bloss Jr 2 years ago

Good riddance. They did a simple will for me at the senior citizens center. My wife had a question about it, and I played telephone tag for a couple of weeks and the person who did the will would not call me back. I called the manager of the senior center and complained. She finally called me back, but was exceedingly rude. I assume they are paid for doing what they do, there is no excuse for such an attitude and behavior.

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