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A core value of our society must be equal access to justice. The complex nature of the legal system limits equal access, especially for people in poverty and those faced with language and cultural barriers. Well-trained legal advocates should be available to all, regardless of economic status. EBCLC works on these issues in two ways: by providing hands-on educational training to law students to make these future legal practitioners aware of and skilled in addressing the needs of indigent communities; and by providing desperately needed legal services to the low-income community.
EBCLC provides information and referral, legal counseling, case management, and representation in the areas of housing, employment and income support, HIV/AIDS law, and community economic development. Since its founding in 1988 by law students at UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall, EBCLC staff attorneys have supervised approximately 400 law students through the clinical internship program. During this time, staff and students have assisted clients with more than 13,000 legal matters. EBCLC is now both the largest provider of legal services for poor people in the East Bay and Boalt Hall's primary legal services clinic. The impact of EBCLC's work is to help make the lives of Bay Area community members more healthy, secure, productive, and hopeful.
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