CPLP's mission is to improve access to legal services for low-income Coloradans by acting in three areas: 1) providing legal advice and representation, through our volunteer network of over 300 attorneys, to low-income individuals; 2) educating and counseling individuals and their support organizations on legal issues common to low-income Coloradans; and 3) supporting groups advocating for protective laws and procedures.
CPLP traces its origin to a monthly legal clinic operated by CPLP's founders, starting in 2005. The legal clinic, housed at the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless (CCH) Stout Street Health Center in Denver, was designed as a place for volunteer attorneys to assist CCH clientele with legal issues. Common issues include obtaining and maintaining government benefits; family law and custody issues; debtor and bankruptcy issues; identification issues; name changes; civil rights issues; personal injury issues; offender deregistration; minor criminal issues; estate and inheritance; and housing issues.
As attendance at these clinics grew, CPLP was incorporated in 2014 and became an official program of the Denver Bar Association's Access to Justice Commission, which offers malpractice insurance for clinic volunteers. CPLP has continued operating the CCH legal clinic to this day.
In 2015, CPLP expanded its activities to accommodate the increased need in the area of affordable housing area. In 2019, CPLP formalized its expertise in housing law and created a "Just Housing" initiative to concentrate on serving individuals and the community more broadly. Under this umbrella, CPLP has sponsored many seminars and continuing learning education (CLE) programs for attorneys and supportive service providers, educating them on recent changes in tenants' rights and housing law.
In 2020, CPLP launched its "Mobile Home Initiative" pilot program in Adams County, Colorado, which seeks to assist mobile home community residents.
All CPLP services are provided free of charge. Representation is provided by volunteer attorneys. Organizational and educational functions are provided by a part-time Executive Director, Caitlin Finn, the full-time Deputy Executive Director Shannon MacKenzie, and the volunteer time of the other four board members, who have been integral to CPLP's founding, funding, and development.
CPLP does not collect testimonials from the clients it serves.