Welcome to Columbia Legal Services

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Barbers are one of the career paths closed due to a prior record.
Creating Second Chances

Tens of thousands of Washington residents who have paid their dues are not given a second chance. The Certificate of Restoration of Opportunities Act (CROP), a bill CLS helped develop, intends to remove barriers to employment for people who have a criminal history and open the door to opportunity, allowing people to move on with their lives. More


New Resources from the Children & Youth Project

Our Children & Youth Project has been studying student homelessness in Washington State and working to help homeless students succeed. See their latest research and find out about their advocacy.

Modern Day Debtors' Prisons

Washington courts are locking up people for being poor. A report by CLS and the ACLU of Washington describes how the burden of court-mandated fines and fees leads to poverty, and frequently, jail time. More

Ensuring Access to Healthcare for Low-Income Immigrants

Washington hospitals were improperly denying immigrants access to "charity care," a crucial safety net for the working poor. Our advocacy reversed discriminatory billing practices and empowered immigrant families to escape crushing medical debts. More


***Welcome to Columbia Legal Services***


Second Chances: A criminal record can be a barrier to finding a job and a place to live long after serving time. The reentry clinics and legislative advocacy of the Institutions Project improve opportunities for people reentering their communities after incarceration. More.


2006: CLS worked with stakeholders to enact legislation that provides tools to workers who have suffered wage-theft from employers who fail to pay wages due. Our advocacy helped to establish fair rules and enforcement to ensure that workers receive what they have earned. More