September 2012 Bar Bulletin
2012 King County Law Firm Campaign for Equal Justice Begins
By Mark Johnson and Harry Schneider
Annually since 2004, the King County Bar Foundation (KCBF) and the Legal Aid for Washington Fund (LAW Fund) have worked together to invite King County law firms to support civil legal aid and diversity programs by contributing to the Campaign for Equal Justice (C4EJ).
In 2011, the C4EJ raised a record-breaking $529,000 from 118 King County firms - 53 firms made contributions of at least $250 per attorney, making them KCBF/LAW Fund Champions of Justice.
Our hope for the 2012 Campaign is to raise at least $550,000 from 130 King County firms and with your help we will do it.
C4EJ 2012 begins on September 17 and continues through the end of the year. The Campaign has been enormously helpful in sustaining our civil legal aid infrastructure, particularly during the past four years when IOLTA revenues have been decimated.
The harsh reality: In 2007, IOLTA generated approximately $10 million for 20 legal aid providers. From 2008–2011, the combined four-year total for IOLTA revenues was $10.9 million. The total for 2012 is estimated to be less than $2 million.
Annually in Washington, three out of four low-income families will face a legal crisis that often involves an issue of personal safety, housing or health, but only one in five will receive legal help. A successful 2012 C4EJ means that our civil legal aid providers and volunteer lawyer programs will be able to continue to assist families in need with the legal help to deal with urgent civil legal problems. You and C4EJ are their hope.
Thank you to all of the law firms who contributed to the 2011 King County Law Firm Campaign for Equal Justice. We look forward to your support again this year, and please bring your friends!
Mark Johnson of Johnson Flora PLLC is vice president of LAW Fund and Harry H. Schneider, Jr. of Perkins Coie is president of the King County Bar Foundation. More information about the King County Law Firm Campaign for Equal Justice is available at www.c4ej.org.