A new initiative focused on providing free legal support to individuals and families impacted by the opioid crisis is underway throughout southeast Texas.

Lone Star Legal Aid, a Texas nonprofit that specializes in providing free legal education, advice and representation to low-income populations, announced the launch of Rise to Recovery.

The opioid epidemic has left countless individuals facing a range of legal challenges, from child custody and visitation disputes to employment issues and bankruptcy, according to the program’s official website. With grant funding from Texas Access to Justice, officials with Lone Star Legal Aid said the organization is dedicated to providing legal assistance to as many people as possible with the funding.

“The best part of our services is that it’s free aid,” said Lindsay Eustace, the organization’s supervising attorney of programwide units. “We don’t charge anybody. We’re attorneys that just want to help the community.”

The framework

Partnering with other local organizations in Harris County and throughout the state, such as community health clinics, recovery centers and churches, is key to getting the word out about Lone Star Legal Aid’s initiative, Eustace said.

Individuals and families interested have multiple options of connecting with the organization, including by phone, hotline and website intake, she said.

Rise to Recovery can help individuals in the following areas:

  • Child custody and visitation: helping parents navigate complex custody and visitation issues to ensure the best interests of their children
  • Divorce and property division: assisting individuals obtaining divorces and equitably dividing assets
  • Employment issues: addressing issues related to job loss and workplace discrimination
  • Discrimination claims: offering support to those facing discrimination based on their history of substance use
  • Debt and bankruptcy: providing guidance on managing debt and filing for bankruptcy
  • Housing and eviction: protecting the housing rights of individuals facing eviction due to opioid-related challenges
  • Family law disputes: resolving family conflicts exacerbated by opioid addiction
  • Contractual disputes: assisting individuals navigating contract-related issues

“As prevalent as it is, there’s still people who don’t know what an opioid is and how rampant it is in every community,” Eustace said.