[The National Center for Access to Justice]'s Justice Index www.justiceindex.org evaluates each state according to the number of civil legal aid attorneys for the poor, the availability of resources for people representing themselves in legal matters, and assistance for non-English speakers and the disabled.
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The data appears to reflect a trend across the rural-urban axis, with the exception, perhaps, of Hawaii, which has large rural segments but good ATJ, and Indiana, which is not as "rural" as Mississippi, South Dakota or Wyoming. Nevada, too, has a couple of significant metro areas.
The story does briefly mention the challenge of spatiality and low population density:
The District of Columbia’s top ranking is due primarily to a “considerably” higher ratio of civil legal aid attorneys than any other jurisdiction, the index notes. It has both the highest population density and the highest per-capita attorney population. “The extreme differences in density of people raise interesting questions about the distribution of civil legal aid services between urban and rural areas,” according to the index website.My own work on access to justice challenges in rural locales can be found here and here.