Resource: Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Access to Justice Uses SRLN Maps for Statewide Strategic Planning

The Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Access to Justice has started using the SRLN demographics maps for presentations to circuit clerks, circuit court judges, civil legal aid and pro bono practitioners. “The maps helped provide context for why access to justice is so necessary by broadening our scope of focus onto statewide demographics,” states Danielle Hirsch, Assistant Director of the Civil Justice Division of Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts. 

One finding she reports is that in some areas many residents lack access to a vehicle, so that helped the court decision makers think more critically about how they can encourage court participation remotely. In addition, Hirsch reports that these geographic information system (GIS) maps have been helpful for statewide presentations because they prompt discussion and critical thinking on statewide demographics and needs and allow people to compare their local jurisdiction to the statewide trends. These GIS maps illustrate statewide needs and challenges that the courts and Access to Justice commissions will grapple with over the coming years.