New Leaf Illinois Grants FY 2021

On June 9, 2021, the Board of Directors of the Illinois Equal Justice Foundation approved $1,288,560* in grants to nonprofit organizations across the state to ensure impacted Illinoisans could access the expungement relief outlined in the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act.

The Illinois Equal Justice Foundation was appropriated state funding to develop a cannabis expungement grants program to distribute to civil legal aid providers throughout Illinois. These organizations educate impacted communities about available assistance, determine eligibility for relief and represent individuals requiring a petition and appearance before the courts.  Grantee organizations operate as a network to ensure services are efficient, comprehensive and impactful.


CIVIL LEGAL ASSISTANCE GRANTS ($510,818)

Land of Lincoln Legal Aid ($92,020) *

Represents communities in 65 southern and central counties including the cities of East St Louis, Springfield, Champaign and Carbondale.


Cabrini Green Legal Aid ($90,000)

Represents justice-involved people in Cook County as well as cases in counties where the local legal aid provider has a conflict of interest.


Chicago Legal Clinic ($90,000)

Represents people in Chicago and suburban Cook County.


Legal Aid Chicago ($83,799)

Represents people in Chicago and suburban Cook County.


James B Moran Center for Youth Advocacy ($55,000)

Represents Evanston residents and surrounding communities at the Skokie courthouse.


Catholic Charities Legal Assistance ($40,000)

Serves Cook and Lake County communities via multiple service offices.


Metropolitan Family Services/Legal Aid Society ($40,000)

Serves impacted neighborhoods in Chicago through Communities Partnering for Peace (CP4P).


Chicago Coalition for the Homeless ($20,000)

Advocates for and represents homeless individuals and families throughout Cook County.


LEGAL INFORMATION FOR THE PUBLIC GRANTS ($417,742)

Prairie State Legal Services ($125,000)

Serves 36 northern and western counties with proposed targeted outreach in Rockford, Joliet and Peoria.


Illinois Legal Aid Online ($54,742) *

Provides legal information and forms statewide via a mobile accessible and ADA compliant website.


Equip for Equality ($40,000)

Educates people with disabilities on their legal rights throughout Illinois with offices in Chicago, Rock Island, Springfield and Carbondale,


Instituto del Progreso Latino ($30,000)

Provides education services and conducts outreach to Latinx communities in the Chicago neighborhoods of Little Village and Pilsen.


Alliance of Local Service Organizations ($25,000)

Conducts street outreach and Know Your Rights presentations for impacted communities in the Chicago neighborhoods of Logan Square, Humboldt Park and West Humboldt Park.


First Defense Legal Aid ($25,000)

Conducts street outreach and Know Your Rights presentations in coordination with community organizations in the Chicago communities of Rogers Park, Garfield Park, Englewood, West Englewood, Washington Park, Woodlawn and South Shore.


Westside Justice Center ($25,000)

Conducts outreach and Know Your Rights workshops in primarily African American communities on Chicago’s Westside, including East Garfield Park and North Lawndale.


Chicago Coalition for the Homeless ($20,000)

To provide outreach and education to unstably-housed and homeless communities impacted by cannabis records.


Farmworker Landscaper Advocacy Project ($20,000)

Conducts outreach to workers in 24 northern and central counties on their employment rights via a partnership with the Mexican Consulate.


Cannabis Equity Coalition ($19,500)

To provide outreach and education to communities impacted by cannabis records as a network partner of New Leaf IL.


Antmound Foundation ($13,500)

Conducts outreach and Know Your Rights presentations with impacted communities in Waukegan.


Cabrini Green Legal Aid ($10,000)

Conducts outreach and Know Your Rights workshops in Cook County via its Leadership Council comprised of individuals impacted by the criminal justice system.


Working Family Solidarity ($10,000)

Conducts outreach and Know Your Rights presentations with Latinx and African American neighbors in the Chicago communities of Little Village, Pilsen, Lawndale, Back of the Yards, Gage Park, Englewood and West Englewood.


TELEPHONE ADVICE AND REFERRAL SERVICES ($320,000)

Coordinated Advice & Referral Program for Legal Services (CARPLS) ($320,000)

To develop and staff a multi-channel entry point for justice-involved Illinoisans seeking relief for cannabis convictions.  Front door staff will determine individuals’ eligibility for relief, refer eligible folks to civil legal assistance network members and provide pro se guidance for those seeking to represent themselves. The entry point will connect network members via an online portal to ensure strong referral processes, track data and provide a streamlined experience for those seeking assistance.


TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE GRANT ($40,000)

Cabrini Green Legal Aid ($25,000)

To provide training and legal content review for attorney and outreach network members across the state.


Shriver Center on Poverty Law ($15,000)

To provide Diversity Equity and Inclusion training to the legal aid community statewide.


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