Jacksonville Area Legal Aid sports a new look logo
'We wanted the logo to speak more to the work JALA does, which is to bring justice to the people of Northeast Florida, a region known for the bridges that connect its various communities'
Titled “Housing Takes Center Stage,” the report shines a spotlight on JALA’s work to prevent unlawful evictions and foreclosures, ensure fair housing laws are enforced, and resolve other landlord-tenant issues.
Out of 6,724 cases JALA handled in 2022, JALA closed 2,618 housing cases, representing nearly 40% of its closed cases.
“Preserving shelter is our highest and best use, and we remain focused on that mission,” the report states.
JALA’s annual report also cites a recent report by the City of Jacksonville’s Special Committee on Critical Quality of Life Issues, which says, “The City should work with and financially support the Jacksonville Area Legal Aid office in efforts to reduce eviction rates, human displacement and homelessness.”
That work gets a boost in Mayor Donna Deegan’s new budget, which recommends greater funding for legal aid.
JALA’s 2022 annual report includes a full-page infographic with data on JALA’s services in housing and other areas, including family law and domestic violence prevention, veterans’ legal services, disability benefits, and services provided to seniors and to children with a combination of medical and legal issues.
Among the data on JALA’s services in the annual report:
- 286 evictions avoided through attorney intervention and $472,832 in financial relief secured for renters
- 124 foreclosures prevented and $468,415 secured in financial relief for homeowners
- 3,643 people used JALA’s online eviction prevention tool
- $661,000 in class action settlements for landlord’s failure to rectify substandard conditions and refund deposits for 2,836 tenants
- $939,725 in income and assets protected by averting predatory lending and illegal debt collection
- $1,164,497 in family support secured for domestic violence survivors and others
“These are just a few of the data points that underscore the tremendous return on investment legal aid provides,” said JALA President & CEO Jim Kowalski.
JALA’s impact in providing access to justice in Northeast Florida is illustrated by its new logo, which blends the scales of justice with an image of a bridge.
“We wanted the logo to speak more to the work JALA does, which is to bring justice to the people of Northeast Florida, a region known for the bridges that connect its various communities,” Kowalski said. “But the bridge also represents access to the justice system, which many people desperately need. For some people there is no way to arrive at justice without the bridge that legal aid provides.”
JALA’s new branding will be rolled out over the coming weeks.