How COVID-19 Changes Our Work in Rural California

Rural Justice Update: COVID-19


Dear friends,

Many clients we see in CRLA offices are people whose work often goes unseen. They harvest fruits and vegetables, cook and deliver food, restock shelves, clean homes and businesses.

We fight for and with them so they are seen and their rights are respected.

Now, in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, their work is more important than ever for everyone's wellbeing.

Yet so many low-wage workers are at risk of losing homes, wages, jobs, and access to healthcare—which means our work is more important than ever, too.

Please consider donating today to help us provide legal services to vulnerable Californians.

CRLA staff know better than most the impact public health and safety crises have on low-income, rural, and other vulnerable communities.

Just as we've seen with California wildfires, we expect that the need for legal services will grow as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Many more people will need help with housing, benefits, and labor and employment.

We have been closely monitoring developments and working to balance the need for legal services with protecting the health and wellbeing of our staff and the communities we serve.

CRLA is considered an "essential business" under shelter in place orders. Even so, we have put in place some common-sense, temporary changes with the intention of doing all we can to slow the spread of COVID-19:

  • CRLA physical offices will be closed to walk-in applicants and for most staff and client activity starting March 18, 2020.
  • Our staff are still available by phone to provide legal assistance to new and existing clients, including live language interpretation.
  • All staff have been directed to work from home, except when leaving is essential to comply with legal and ethical obligations to our clients.
  • In those exceptional cases, staff will follow social distancing and sanitizing protocols recommended by public health agencies.

These are uncertain times, but our commitment to fight for the rights of vulnerable people in rural California will never change.

Thank you for being part of our community, and please take care of yourselves and each other. When things feel hardest, we always know there is a little light just up ahead...

Siempre adelante, creando luz!
Forward always, creating light!


Jose Padilla
Executive Director





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