Somewhere in there, here’s hoping we all take a moment—or more—to remember why the holiday exists. In my job, I’ve been privileged to report on recent efforts to assist military members (see here and here). And today, there is news of a great initiative launched by the American Bar Association—its “Home Front” website that provides resources for servicemembers and their families.
Here is the concept, as described by the ABA. Please pass it on to anyone you think may benefit from it.
American Bar Association
Division for Communications and Media Relations
AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE FOR MILITARY FAMILIES
ABA Home Front Provides Resources for Understanding Legal Issues and Obtaining Law-Related Assistance
WASHINGTON, D.C., May 17, 2011 – The American Bar Association has launched a new website, ABA Home Front, dedicated to providing servicemembers and military families with resources for understanding legal issues and obtaining law-related assistance for the problems they face every day. This site features an Information Center, a Directory of Programs and a Military Pro Bono Center, all designed to deliver legal information and expert assistance to military families.
“Being in the military is a 24/7 commitment that takes its members and their families across the country, and around the world,” said ABA President Stephen N. Zack. “That’s where the online legal center comes in. At any time, someone can access basic information on the legal issue they’re dealing with — whether it’s a family law matter, tax question or problem with a creditor.”
The Information Center consists of easy-to-understand resources about Working with a Lawyer and the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which provides legal protections for active-duty military and their families. The site also has a Family Law section that explains law-related implications and options in such areas as marriage and divorce, domestic violence and custody disputes.
“The center offers information on a number of legal topics,” Zack said. “We will continue to grow it in response to what servicemembers tell us they need.”
The Information Center will be expanded to include additional materials about landlord-tenant disputes, health law, immigration, contracts and leases, tax, and employment law.
The Directory of Programs can help military families find services in or near their community with state-by-state listings of legal programs and organizations. Programs can include military legal assistance offices, legal aid and pro bono organizations, lawyer referral and information services, and military-specific programs where available. Although many of the programs are pro bono, some may require payment of some costs or impose income-eligibility limits.
The Military Pro Bono Center is a resource for lawyers interested in providing pro bono representation for military members or in providing pro bono lawyer-to-lawyer consultation with military legal assistance attorneys.
With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.