Together, we do the community justice.


Local schools urged to test water for lead

The following article, written by Jeremy P. Kelley, appeared December 8, 2017 in Dayton Daily News. Read below or view the article on DDN's website.

A local nonprofit law firm is pushing Dayton area schools to test their water for lead after getting little response to information requests sent in March and July.

Advocates for Basic Legal Equality (ABLE) sent surveys to 53 charter, Catholic and private schools plus the Dayton Public School district, and only seven schools plus DPS responded with information that they had done testing.

Attorney Ellis Jacobs of ABLE said the schools that did respond identified only small, easily remedied issues, but his concern is that many schools may not have done testing at all.


House bill would rein in predatory lenders

The following, written by Aisha Sleiman and George Thomas (ABLE), appeared December 1, 2017 in The Blade.

Four out of five people who take out a short-term payday loan cannot afford to pay it back in just two weeks. Most roll it over and effectively end up in a debt trap for months on end. But payday borrowers in Ohio face an additional burden: Ohio currently has the most expensive payday loans in the country.

Advocates for Basic Legal Equality provides free legal services to low-income people in northwest Ohio, and our attorneys encounter the many reasons people find themselves in poverty. Financial exploitation ranks high on that list. Predatory payday lenders often cluster near lower-income, and African-American and Latino neighborhoods.


ICE Deports Maribel Trujillo Diaz

Attorneys from Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc. (ABLE) were informed this morning that Maribel Trujillo Diaz is on a plane bound for Mexico. For the past week, Maribel has been held in an ICE detention center in Louisiana awaiting deportation. ICE denied all requests to exercise its prosecutorial discretion not to separate Maribel from her family. Maribel leaves behind four American children. 

"We are disappointed and outraged that ICE has chosen not to exercise prosecutorial discretion despite the thousands of calls and nationwide advocacy from community members, elected officials, and faith leaders," says Kathleen Kersh, Maribel's ABLE attorney.


ABLE Immigration Legal-Awareness Training


ABLE Immigration Legal-Awareness Training

for Service Providers & Community Supporters

Mark your calendars! Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc (ABLE) is hosting an immigration legal-awareness training for service providers and community supporters on Wednesday, April 5, 2017. Learn how President Trump's recent actions on immigration may impact your organization and our local immigrant and refugee communities—and how you can help.


Free Legal Assistance with Citizenship & Naturalization: Saturday, April 8, 2017


An information session on how to apply for citizenship and what you need to know about the naturalization process is scheduled for Saturday, April 8, 2017 at the downtown Toledo offices of Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, Inc. (ABLE), located at 525 Jefferson Ave., from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The information session is presented by ABLE, Adelante, En Camino (SS. Peter & Paul Church), Water for Ishmael, and Welcome Toledo-Lucas County. Attorneys and advocates from these organizations will be available throughout the event.


AT&T Fails To Invest in Low-Income Montgomery County Neighborhoods


Earlier this month the National Digital Inclusion Alliance and Connect Your Community, a Cleveland based organization, published a report indicating that AT&T had "systematically discriminated against lower income Cleveland neighborhoods in its deployment of home internet and video technologies over the last decade."

The organizations reviewed broadband availability data submitted by AT&T to the Federal Communications Commission for June 2016 to reach its conclusions, suggesting that the company withheld broadband improvements from neighborhoods with high poverty rates while upgrading its network in other parts of Cuyahoga County. (click here for the report)


Challenges outlined by firm; Important to protect children, advocates tell Rotary

The following article, written by Mike Sigov, appeared January 24, 2017 in The Blade. ABLE Director of Advocacy, Aneel Chablani, speaks to the Rotary Club of Toledo. Read the article below or view on The Blade's website.

An Advocates for Basic Legal Equality representative called on Rotary Club of Toledo members Monday for help fighting poverty in the inner city and other less privileged communities.

"It is critical that we identify the areas where we can have the most impact ... and then [act] through changing social and economic conditions and legal interventions," said Aneel Chablani, ABLE's director of advocacy. "That's also work that can be adopted through community leadership organizations like Rotary."

Mr. Chablani told about 200 Rotary members at the club's noon luncheon in the Park Inn ballroom that it is important to focus those poverty-fighting efforts on critical issues such as pediatric chronic asthma and children's exposure to lead.


Legal Aid: "When in doubt, call"

The following article, written by Sara Arthurs, appeared January 9, 2017 in the Findlay-Hancock County Courier. Read below or view on The Courier's website. LAWO attorneys John Keenehan and Melissa LaRocco were interviewed for the story.

People who need a lawyer but don't have money to pay for one can sometimes get help from Legal Aid of Western Ohio.

The nonprofit organization provides free legal help for civil needs to people meeting certain income guidelines. They do not help in cases of criminal charges, such as DUI, said John Keenehan, attorney with Legal Aid of Western Ohio. But they may help with things like civil protection orders, in domestic violence cases. And they've helped people with divorce-related matters and with writing wills. They've also done outreach to seniors at 50 North through an Older Americans Act grant.



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