- David Plazas is the director of opinion and engagement for the USA TODAY Network Tennessee.
This Memorial Day marks three years since George Floyd was murdered, resulting in a national racial reckoning that caused many leaders and organizations to become more fully engaged in how they see and solve systemic inequities.
Among them is DarKenya W. Waller, executive director of Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands.
On this episode of the Tennessee Voices video podcast, Waller talked about becoming more intentional about racial justice and social justice work. Equity gaps were exposed by COVID-19, which emerged shortly before Floyd’s murder.
She said people struggled with getting unemployment benefits, obtaining Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits for the first time and dealing with systemic barriers brought to light by the pandemic.
Waller also talked about his recent guest opinion column on how achieving racial justice is an all-year pursuit.
The Legal Aid Society is the state’s largest nonprofit law firm and focuses on civil cases, be it, for example, issues of evictions or domestic violence. The incidence of the latter spiked with COVID.
There is no constitutional right to an attorney in a civil trial so the organization offers many free resources for civil legal services in these cases.
Call 1-800-238-1443 or visit https://las.org/ to learn more.
Hear more Tennessee Voices: Get the weekly opinion newsletter for insightful and thought provoking columns.
Sign up for the Latino Tennessee Voices newsletter: Read compelling stories for and with the Latino community in Tennessee.
Sign up for the Black Tennessee Voices newsletter: Read compelling columns by Black writers from across Tennessee.
About Tennessee Voices
The Tennessee Voices videocast is a 20-minute program, which started in March 2020 and invites leaders, thinkers and innovators who have written guest columns for a USA TODAY Network Tennessee publication to share their insights and wisdom with me and our viewers.
Watch past episodes:Tennessee Voices videocasts
Please email your ideas for future guests to me at [email protected]. Thank you for watching.
Finally, our journalists are working hard during this pandemic to bring you accurate, verified and solid information. Please consider subscribe and support local journalism.
David Plazas is the director of opinion and engagement for the USA TODAY Network – Tennessee. He is of Colombian and Cuban descent, has studied or worked in several Spanish-speaking countries, and was the founding editor of Gaceta Tropical in Southwest Florida. He has lived in Tennessee since 2014. Call him at (615) 259-8063, email him at [email protected] or tweet to him at @davidplazas.
- Pritzker asks for more federal money to states with abortion access
- SA seeks legal advice on R396bn Eskom debt burden
- Almost 30% of queries to free legal advice service related to family law
- Legal Aid of NC gets more than $4 million to help natural disaster victims | Crime News
- State appropriation boosts legal aid services for low income families