Statement from OSBA President Randall Comer: Ohio lawyers support citizens of Texas in wake of Hurricane Harvey

Aug. 30, 2017

In the wake of the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, the Ohio State Bar Association is calling on all lawyers, law firms and bar associations in Ohio to get involved in the relief effort, both to provide for the immediate needs of flood victims, and to prepare for the expected demand for legal services in the weeks and months ahead.

The OSBA today authorized a leadership gift of $10,000, directing $5,000 to the American Red Cross in its efforts to provide food, shelter and clothing to those impacted, and $5,000 to the Texas Access to Justice Commission to help keep legal aid services up and running for victims. I urge the legal community to join us and to give generously to these organizations as the need is great.

We have learned that the building that housed Lone Star Legal Aid suffered an apparent explosion and sustained serious fire damage on Monday, shutting down its base of operations for the near future. Despite this setback, the employees have pledged to continue to serve their fellow Texans impacted by the storm.

You can donate to both organizations online via the following links:

American Red Cross: http://www.redcross.org/

Texas Access to Justice Commission: http://www.texasatj.org/

I also ask lawyers and law firms with offices or affiliations in communities near to the disaster areas to open their doors to displaced lawyers so they can serve the immediate needs of Hurricane Harvey’s victims.

These are two initial actions the Ohio legal community can take to assist the victims of Hurricane Harvey. In addition, we have been in touch with Ohio State Bar Foundation​ President Andy Storar, who together with his Board, is determining how the Foundation and its Fellows can make the most impact. Together, we will be working with lawyers, law firms and bar associations across the country in the coming weeks an​d months to identify ways we can assist with rebuilding the justice system in the affected states. I ask our members to remain vigilant and generous, and to stand ready to support the victims of what may very well be one of this nation’s most catastrophic disasters.

To paraphrase a quote from Martin Luther King, Jr., the ultimate measure of people is not where they stand in moments of comfort and convenience, but where they stand at times of challenge and controversy. Let’s stand together to help our colleagues in Texas as they face a monumental challenge.

The Ohio State Bar Association, founded in 1880, is a voluntary association representing approximately 23,000 members of the bench and bar of Ohio as well as nearly 4,000 legal assistants and law students. Through its activities and the activities of its related organizations, the OSBA serves both its members and the public by promoting the highest standards in the practice of law and the administration of justice.

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