Rural Justice Updates

CRLA At The Capital

CRLA Fresno Directing Attorney Estella Cisneros testified before the California Senate Labor Committee about sexual harassment in the fields. She was invited by Senator Bill Monning, a CRLA alum. Sen. Monning has authored a bill amending the Farm Labor Contractor Act to impose stricter requirements and penalties for failure to provide sexual harassment training. 

Watch The Testimony (18.23) >>

Legal Aid Is Under Attack

Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/iStock.

Currently, Legal Services Corporation (LSC), the major funder of many legal aids in the nation, is facing defunding. Losing funding would prevent low income people from having access to the justice system across the country. This is a non-partisan issue, as Texas Chief Justice Nathan Hecht said it best, "Justice for only those who can afford it is neither justice for all nor justice at all." CRLA's Jose Padilla was recently interviewed for an article about the potential defunding of legal services.

Learn more here >>

In Memory of Jim Lorenz, CRLA Founder

CRLA’s founder and first Executive Director Jim Lorenz recently passed away. Lorenz founded CRLA to be the first statewide law firm for farmworkers and the rural poor. We send our thoughts and prayers to his family and loved ones.

Read about Jim in a
Time Magazine Article from 1967 >>

Oxnard Education Ambassadors Workshops!

CRLA provides dynamic community work, which allows us to impact the community in and outside of the courtroom. With help from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, CRLA has expanded its education clinics and workshops. CRLA’s Education Ambassadors Workshops aim to provide parents and students the latest information on education laws in a way that promotes leadership development in addressing education equity issues. 


On January 25, 2017, CRLA’s Rural Education Equity Program Community Worker Leoda Valenzuela led an education workshop in Oxnard. Thirty community members learned about how the law can be used to protect students from bullying and the impact bullying has on students enrolled in alternative education programs.

Environmental Justice!

CRLA filed a lawsuit against the Department of Pesticide Regulation for failing to heed scientific evidence before making new rules for pesticide use. "These regulations were passed without going through the rulemaking process," said CRLA’s Natalia Ospina. 

Learn more here >>