Maryland Legal Aid adopts a human rights framework

The January-February issue of Clearinghouse Review features an article by Maryland Legal Aid assistant director of advocacy for income security Peter Sabonis, “Using a human rights framework at the Maryland Legal Aid Bureau.”

“We did it because our client communities pushed us to align our advocacy with their broader needs, not simply their legal problems,” Sabonis wrote. “A comprehensive 2008 statewide assessment of our client population in all twenty-four Maryland counties showed that our clients’ priority needs were affordable housing; jobs that pay living wages; affordable and comprehensive health care; and strong, safe communities.”

“Beginning with the premise that clients, because of their own humanity, are entitled to civil and economic rights, we hoped to trigger both systemic and individual advocacy that was characteristic our our early history: aggressive, creative, client-centered, and movement-oriented,” he added.


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