Written by Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia

Jun 07


The Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia Launches the 2021 Making Justice Real Campaign

On June 1, 2021, the Legal Aid Society of The District of Columbia (Legal Aid) launched its annual Making Justice Real Campaign to raise funds that cover the cost of providing free legal services to poverty-stricken individuals and families living in Washington, D.C.

The Making Justice Real Campaign brings together thousands of people to support the mission of the Legal Aid Society, the city’s oldest and largest civil legal services organizations. The goal: make justice “real,” in individual and systemic ways, for those who cannot afford legal services. Read more →

Apr 20


Legal Aid Statement on Conviction of Derek Chauvin

Following the brutal, senseless killing of George Floyd last year, we at the Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia unequivocally affirmed the obvious: that Black Lives Matter, and renewed our commitment to stand in solidarity with those speaking out, peacefully demonstrating, and demanding a country and a society that will treat every one of its residents with dignity and respect.

And today, while still feeling grief and outrage over Mr. Floyd’s death, we believe that justice and accountability have been rightfully served with a conviction for Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer. Read more →

Apr 08


“40 at 50” Honorary Event Recognizes D.C. Pro Bono Leaders

Yesterday, the D.C. Circuit Judicial Conference Standing Committee on Pro Bono Legal Services held the first-ever virtual “40 at 50” Pro Bono Event. The event recognized DC law firms for outstanding leadership in pro bono service. It honored firms that had at least 40% of their lawyers contribute at least 50 pro bono hours in years 2019 and/or 2020. Read more →

Mar 26


Longtime Legal Aid Pro Bono Volunteer David Reiser Receives 2021 William J. Brennan Jr. Award

Last week, the D.C. Bar announced plans to honor David Reiser of Zuckerman Spaeder with the 2021 William J. Brennan Jr. AwardThis award, bestowed upon members of the D.C. Bar whoexhibit “excellence, commitment, and dedication in the areas of civil rights, civil liberties, and the public interest,” is well deserved and reflects David’s substantial contributions to the pursuit of justice, equality, and the public good. Read more →

Mar 18


Stop AAPI Hate

We at Legal Aid are horrified by the tragic violence in Georgia on Tuesday evening that stole the lives of eight individuals—six of whom are of Asian descent, and seven of whom are women. We mourn their loss and recommit ourselves to work that honors them and the countless other victims of race and gender-based violence.

These senseless killings take place at a time when we are witnessing a surge of hate crimes against Asian Americans throughout the United States. According to a recent report by Stop AAPI Hate, Asian Americans have reported roughly 3,800 incidents of hate-related acts since the pandemic struck. But the Atlanta shooter also targeted women, and in particular, women associated with an industry vulnerable to terror and abuse. This is consistent with another deeply troubling pattern: In the past year, Asian American women—too often hypersexualized and objectified in our culture—have disproportionately experienced hate-related harassment, bullying, abuse, and violence, at a rate 2.3 times that of Asian American men. Read more →

Mar 09


Legal Aid Mourns the Passing of 2010 Servant of Justice Award Honoree Vernon E. Jordan Jr.

The Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia mourns the loss of 2010 Servant of Justice Award Honoree Vernon E. Jordan Jr, who spent his career as a civil-rights leader, lawyer, and adviser to President Clinton. He held leadership positions in many different civil-rights organizations and was influential in pushing for diversity in the corporate world, including within the legal profession.

For more on Mr. Jordan’s remarkable life and career, we refer you to obituaries published in the Washington Post and the New York Times. Our thoughts go out to his friends and family. Read more →

Nov 12


DC Bar Foundation to Honor Beth Mellen with the Scoutt Prize

This week, Legal Aid’s Beth Mellen, a Supervising Attorney in the Housing Law Unit and the Director of Legal Aid’s Eviction Defense Project, will be honored by the DC Bar Foundation with the Scoutt Prize for her skills as “a fierce courtroom advocate, a compassionate client advisor, a dedicated mentor to younger lawyers, a skilled manager, and an accomplished leader of housing policy reform.”

During Beth’s fifteen years as a Legal Aid attorney, she has been a dedicated advocate for housing rights across the District. Her knowledge of local and federal housing law, combined with her advocacy skills, has preserved safe, affordable housing for hundreds of residents in DC.

“For years, Beth has been a fierce, thoughtful, effective advocate for tenants in the District of Columbia. This is an incredibly well-deserved recognition,” says Eric Angel, Executive Director of Legal Aid. Read more →

Oct 20


DC SAFE to honor Trisha Monroe with the COVID-19 Hero Award

This week, Legal Aid’s Trisha Monroe, a Supervising Attorney in the Domestic Violence/Family Law Unit, will be honored by DC SAFE with the COVID-19 Hero Award, recognizing her “outstanding partnership, flexibility, and commitment to survivors during the pandemic.”

“I am humbled by this award, especially coming from our partners at DC SAFE, which does tremendous work on behalf of domestic violence survivors in DC,” Trisha said.

Since the start of the pandemic, Legal Aid’s Domestic Violence/Family Law Unit has responded to the increased needs of survivors in DC in a variety of ways, including by launching the Petition Assistance Project, which has helped hundreds of survivors (including 22 in a single day) file for Civil Protection Orders electronically. Read more →

Mar 13


How to Get Legal Help During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, in order to protect our clients, staff, and volunteers, Legal Aid’s Northwest and Southeast offices are closed to the public. We are open for telephone or online intake.

If you have a legal problem, please call (202) 628-1161 or visit

For the latest information from the DC Courts, please visit

For information about available community resources during the COVID-19 outbreak, please see our Non-Legal Resource Guide

For the latest information from the District government, please visit

Read more →

Oct 10


Inaugural Steptoe Housing Law Fellow Joins Legal Aid

The Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia is pleased to announce that Candace Mitchell has joined Legal Aid as the inaugural Steptoe Housing Law Fellow!

As part of Legal Aid’s Housing Law Unit, Ms. Mitchell will represent low-income tenants to prevent evictions and preserve access to safe and affordable housing in the District.

“We are thrilled to have such a skilled public advocate in Ms. Mitchell as the first Steptoe Housing Law Fellow,” said Paul Lee, Pro Bono Counsel at Steptoe. “In supporting this fellowship, our goal with Legal Aid is to expand pro bono legal services available for the preservation of affordable housing in the District.” Read more →