AARP Foundation awards $115,500 grant to SULC for elder law community engagement


The Southern University Law Center (SULC) has been awarded an $115,500 grant from the AARP Foundation for a project that will take law students into the community to support low-income elderly individuals.

Elder Law Community Engagement, which began January 1 and will run through December 31, 2016, assists the low-income elderly in maintaining their property, controlling their end-of-life decisions, and protecting them from predatory financial schemes that threaten their security.

“This grant affords the Southern University Law Center an opportunity to expand experiential educational opportunities for our law students and enables the Law Center to broaden its reach in serving valued yet vulnerable members of the Baton Rouge community,” according to SULC Interim Chancellor John K. Pierre.

“We are extremely grateful to the AARP Foundation for recognizing the valuable work we do for the elderly and allowing the Law Center this opportunity to enhance the delivery of services to the elderly in our community,” Pierre said.

The goals of the program is to reach at least 10,000 vulnerable seniors with legal educational materials; provide in-person interaction with at least 5,000 seniors; and to increase the overall volume of legal cases represented by the elder law clinic, according to associate clinical professor Dorothy Jackson.

Also through this program, SULC will  increase elder law community engagement by creating a legal hotline staffed by law students; provide materials and request for legal services cards that accompany meals-on-wheels recipients; send law students to assist homebound seniors for legal services evaluations and assistance; produce materials and videos to educate seniors about legal issues; and catalog the legal issues facing low-income seniors and look at proposed legislative solutions to these issues.

“The Elder Law Clinic will host an elder law summit to discuss emerging elder law issues and how students and established attorneys can better serve the elderly population,” Prof. Jackson said.

Additionally, the grant will enable the Elder Law Clinic to hire additional licensed attorneys to serve as adjunct clinical professors and will allow more student-attorneys beyond the typical 15 per semester that now work with the clinic, she said.

For more grant program details, contact Prof. Dorothy Jackson, or (225) 771-3333.