Rural America is facing an unprecedented crisis in legal representation. Approximately 20% of Americans live in Rural America but yet only 2% of lawyers practice there. Current trends indicate that this problem will only get worse. Just as rural America is aging, as is its legal profession.
Many rural communities, particularly in my native South, are still struggling with the effects of Jim Crow and years of racial subjugation.
Minority-majority rural communities in this country are disproportionately impoverished and have higher crime rates than other rural spaces.
Rural spaces have unique challenges. They are generally isolated from resources and lack access to infrastructure that many non-rural residents take for granted. For example, in my current home state of Virginia, 500,000 people lack access to broadband.
We live in a world defined by interconnectedness, the internet has made the world a smaller place. It is increasingly difficult however for rural America to partake in this new, modern world.
My name is Christopher Chavis. I am a native of Robeson County, North Carolina and citizen of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina. My life's passion is bringing awareness and finding solutions to the inequalities present in rural spaces. My work and research focuses primarily on the Eastern United States, particularly north and south of the Boston-Washington corridor.
Commentary: The Cost of Rural School Consolidation - The Daily Yonder, August 2, 2019
Solving outmigration from rural America is anything but simple - Legal Ruralism, July 29, 2019
A Historical Nugget: The Ethical Responsibilities of Small Town Lawyers - Legal Ruralism, July 20, 2019
Commentary: The Historical Roots of "Send Her Back," - The Daily Yonder, July 19, 2019
New Hampshire to stop charging inmates for the cost of incarceration - Legal Ruralism, July 17, 2019
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