“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
– Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Author: Linnet Overton, TALS Outreach and Development Director
I love to highlight the successes of legal services in Tennessee. On our Facebook page, Twitter, and here in our blog, we often get the opportunity to applaud our legal aid programs’ hard work. Tennessee’s legal service providers have scaled mountains for their clients. There are two sides to this journey though, and reading articles such as this one in the New York Times and hearing about the impending unveiling of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial has me thinking about the hills still left to climb.
We try to strike a balance, particularly on our blog, between being aware of the struggles civil legal services face and viewing these hard times as an opportunity for innovation and collaboration. In pieces such as this one, “Doing More with Less,” or, “It was the Best of Times, it was the Worst of Times” by our Executive Director Erik Cole, or this one about our project OnlineTNJustice.org , we focus on being proactive and positive. Conversely, there are times we also need to be reminded of the gravity of our situation, such as in this piece about Federal funding cuts. This more serious perspective helps us remain realistic and maintain a sense of urgency when developing our plans for addressing shrinking budgets, growing populations of need, and the potential for overextending service providers.
So, as this week closes and I approach my weekend, I’m taking a moment to reflect on this balance between achievements and what’s left to be achieved. I’m reminding myself to be grateful for all I have that provides me the opportunity to serve others and I’m reconnecting to why I work to improve conditions for poor and vulnerable populations. For me, it is a commitment to the well-being of the collective that gets me up in the morning. As Dr. King said more eloquently than I ever could, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
What brings you in to your office every day? What are you grateful for? Tell us on Facebook today – we’d love to hear from you!