All states represented at ABA annual event

The American Bar Association welcomed participation from all 50 states in the association’s annual effort to connect policymakers with their constituents in the legal profession.

ABA Day in Washington, D.C., brought together bar association volunteer leaders — from local, territorial, state and specialty bar associations as well as from the ABA — to speak to their elected representatives on issues important to the profession, to clients and the public at large.

This year’s ABA Day, April 17-19, focused on funding for the Legal Services Corp., the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, and the Crime Victim Restitution and Court Fee Intercept Act.

The Legal Services Corp. is the single largest provider of civil legal aid in the nation, distributing 95 percent of its federal appropriation to 135 legal aid programs, with more than 900 offices nationwide. 

Since its passage in 1994, VAWA has provided assistance to hundreds of thousands of women, men and children who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking. 

The law was reauthorized in 2000 and 2005; the 2005 reauthorization expired last year.

The ABA says the Crime Victim Restitution and Court Fee Intercept Act would provide a cost-neutral way for the federal government to help financially strapped state courts collect overdue court-ordered fines and crime victim restitution.

In addition to meetings with legislators, the ABA recognized members of Congress and local advocates for their work.