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Health and Family Services Cabinet
Kentucky receives $100,000 grant to help seniors access legal services

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, November 20, 2007  
Contact Information:  Lisa Wallace
(502) 564-6786, ext. 4013
 


FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 20, 2007) – Older Kentuckians will have improved access to legal services thanks to a federal grant to the Kentucky Department for Aging and Independent Living (DAIL) in the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

DAIL has received a $100,000 grant from the federal Administration on Aging (AoA) to improve access to affordable legal services for eligible senior citizens. Kentucky is one of seven states sharing $700,000 in first-year federal program funds.

In Kentucky, the grant will be used to expand state participation in the Model Approaches to Statewide Legal Systems Program established by the AoA earlier this year. The cabinet will partner with Lexington’s Access to Justice Foundation to promote and coordinate delivery of legal services, including legal help lines; free legal services offered by private providers; law school information and education clinics; and self-help Web sites. The nonprofit foundation has operated the Legal HelpLine for older Kentuckians since 1998 and will serve as a single point of contact for older Kentuckians seeking legal assistance under the program. 

The Legal HelpLine also will provide program training and technical assistance to staff of the Kentucky Resource Market, a DAIL project that provides one-stop information about and access assistance and referrals to aging and disabilities programs.

One of Kentucky’s project goals is to identify consumer service needs and existing legal service providers in the state to enhance access to services by older residents in underserved areas of the state. In addition to public and private legal service providers, the state’s 15 Area Agencies on Aging will play key roles as liaisons with service providers, developing regional service networks and responding to client inquiries about available services.

Training for legal professionals also will be provided to familiarize them with the needs of elder Kentuckians and their caregivers.

“This grant will help Kentucky better coordinate legal services for seniors and help match the best possible low-cost legal services with at-risk seniors whose legal issues could threaten their independence,” said Deborah Anderson, DAIL commissioner.

At the end of the three-year grant period, Kentucky and other grant project states will report on the cost-effective, well-integrated legal services systems and strategies developed to increase access to legal assistance for elders.

For more information about Kentucky’s low-cost legal services for eligible seniors, contact Whitney Hayse with DAIL at (502) 564-6930 or e-mail whitneyl.hayse@ky.gov.

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Last Updated 11/20/2007