While BLC is best known for our direct representation of people in their Social Security cases, we also work together with many local and national partners to advocate for change to the systems that stand in the way of our clients achieving their goals of economic and medical stability. Our current strategic plan, adopted in 2018, helps us to focus our advocacy by tracking closely with the Statewide Plan for Civil Legal Aid (State Plan). This helps us be accountable in following through on our commitments to the goals and strategies of the broader legal aid community. One of these commitments is related to the work we do and roles we play in systems advocacy. Over the next couple of months, we will be sharing the progress we have made on defining the systems advocacy that BLC is engaged in. We will do this by sharing a series of position statements so that you can gain a deeper understanding of the root of our work.
These position statements will be housed on our website and are the foundation of the systems change we advocate for while we deliver services in our community, one case at a time. Our hope is that this will give us a way to anchor our communication with you about our work within the broader movement of economic justice. These position statements each apply a race equity lens to the work that we do and will serve as guidance to us when we decide how and whether we can support a proposed change/challenge to an existing structure, rule, system, policy, etc.
The first of several of these statements is appropriately focused on changes we and our national partners would like to see made to Social Security’s Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Here’s the link to our position statement. For several years, BLC has worked with local and national partners to seek passage of the SSI Restoration Act through Congress. Read on to learn about BLC’s position on how to improve SSI to strengthen our community.supplemental security income policy position