ABLE and LAWO

CELEBRATING 50 YEARS

OF SERVICE BY CONTINUING THE FIGHT AGAINST POVERTY AND INJUSTICE IN GREATER DAYTON

For 50 years, the legal assistance provided by the dedicated professionals, staff and volunteers of ABLE and LAWO has bettered the lives of the most vulnerable, at-risk members of our community, such as children, victims of domestic violence, homeless families, the elderly, and our veterans.

Through their individual legal representation of those in need to their collaboration with community agencies focused on reducing poverty and addressing the systemic causes of poverty, ABLE and LAWO improve the lives of those they serve on a daily basis. I urge you to join me in supporting ABLE and LAWO’s campaign so they can continue to protect the well-being of our children, keep families together, and remove the barriers to escaping poverty for another 50 years and beyond.

Susan Bridgman

SUSAN R. BRIDGMAN

CO-CHAIR, 50 YEARS OF FAIRNESS & JUSTICE CAMPAIGN

Bob Curry

ROBERT M. CURRY

CO-CHAIR, 50 YEARS OF FAIRNESS & JUSTICE CAMPAIGN

As a board member of ABLE and LAWO, I have personally observed – and been awed by – the degree to which these services have a major impact on the lives and well-being of the clients. Despite the importance of this work, it is disturbing to recognize how many people in our community who need this assistance are unable to obtain it.

The 50th anniversary campaign is designed to rejuvenate our community’s commitment to meeting these needs. Please consider making a gift to the 50 Years of Fairness and Justice Campaign.

CHANGING LIVES FOR 50 YEARS

Over the past 50 years, thousands of residents in the Greater Dayton area have benefited from high-quality, free legal assistance provided by legal aid law firms.

Starting as the Legal Aid Society of Dayton and later under the leadership of Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc. (ABLE) and Legal Aid of Western Ohio, Inc. (LAWO), these firms have represented individuals facing non-criminal legal issues when they could not afford to hire an attorney.

While the law requires legal representation in criminal cases, there is no requirement for representation in civil matters. This means that, without legal aid, many individuals and families would go without the legal help they need to lead safe, stable lives.

ABLE and LAWO attorneys work with individuals and families in times of crisis, including those facing loss of housing and financial security, and experiencing threats to their safety.

  • Veterans
  • Tenants
  • Domestic violence survivors
  • Low-income seniors
  • Those with a disability
  • Families on public assistance

In 2016, we assisted 3,202 individuals in Dayton (Montgomery County) and secured more than $2.13 million in benefits and awards in the areas of child support, spousal support, unemployment compensation, supplemental security income, debt writeoff, disability assistance, food stamps, and damages.

THE VALUE OF ABLE AND LAWO

For the vast majority of those who live in poverty—more than 122,000 in Greater Dayton—ABLE and LAWO attorneys are their only source of comprehensive civil legal representation.

All services are provided free of charge and emphasis is placed on serving those with the greatest social and economic need, people vulnerable because of domestic violence or disabilities, and people facing the loss of their homes.

Civil legal aid is critical to stabilizing the lives of our clients and assuring fairness for every person, regardless of how much money they have.

Without ABLE and LAWO, thousands of low-income and elderly people living in the Greater Dayton area would find themselves alone in courtrooms fighting for the necessities of life—a place to live, protection from violence, support for their families—without the help of a lawyer.