Equal Justice ConferenceFor Immediate Release
May 9, 2016
CONTACT: Jax Gitzes, Pro Bono Net
212-760-2554 x462 | jgitzes@probono.net

Strengthening Partnerships among Key Players in the Civil Justice System

At the 2016 Equal Justice Conference (EJC) this week, several Pro Bono Net staff members will be presenting at multiple sessions on a variety of equal justice issues. The Conference takes place May 11-14th in Chicago and is hosted by the ABA Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service and the National Legal Aid & Defender Association.

Pro Bono Net is a national nonprofit leader in increasing access to justice through innovative uses of technology and collaboration. Pro Bono Net’s staff is made up of a cross-disciplinary team from legal, technology, and community engagement backgrounds who are committed to finding innovative, sustainable solutions for expanding access to justice.

The Equal Justice Conference brings together all components of the legal community to discuss equal justice issues as they relate to the delivery of legal services to the poor. Pro Bono Net will present on a wide range of topics, including innovative uses of online document assembly and technology to expand pro bono participation.

Staff attending the conference includes Liz Keith, Program Director; Claudia Johnson, LawHelp Interactive Program Coordinator; Mike Grunenwald, Program Coordinator; Niki De Mel, Pro Bono and Special Initiatives Coordinator; and Jessica Stuart, Pro Bono Manager Product Manager.

Pro Bono Net staff are participating in the following pre-conference activities and conference workshops. For more details on each workshop, please visit the EJC website here.

Wednesday, 7:30 AM to 5 PM: Self Represented Litigants Network  (Preconference)

  • E-filing and online document assembly roundtable: Claudia Johnson

Wednesday, 12:45 to 2:15 PM: Pro Bono Innovation Fund Grantee Meeting Lunch

  • Lunchtime table talk: Liz Keith, Pro Bono Net

Thursday, 11:45 AM
LawHelp / probono.net / LawHelp Interactive Affinity Group Table
Art Institute of Chicago
Programs are invited to share project highlights and connect with others around the country working on LawHelp.org, probono.net and LHI online forms projects. Look for our table at the Art Institute of Chicago networking lunch! Contact Liz Keith at lkeith@probono.net with any questions.

Thursday, 1:45 PM:
The Bread and Butter Tools and Service All States’ Legal Delivery Systems Should Have to Increase Access to Justice

  • Terri Ross, Illinois Legal Aid Online
  • Angela Tripp, Michigan Legal Help
  • Niki del Mel,  Pro Bono Net
  • Claudia Johnson, Pro Bono Net

Thursday, 3:30 PM:
Civil Gideon in D.C. and San Francisco: Challenges, Solutions, and Looking Ahead

  • Lise Adams, DC Bar Pro Bono Center
  • Mike Grunenwald, Pro Bono Net
  • Mairi S. McKeever, Justice & Diversity Center, Pro Bono Legal Services Program, The Bar Association of San Francisco
  • John Pollack, National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel

Friday, 10:15 AM:
50 Tech Tips

  •  David Bonebrake, Legal Services Corporation
  • Liz Keith, Pro Bono Net
  • Glenn Rawdon, Legal Services Corporation
  • Jane Ribadeneyra, Legal Services Corporation
  • Brian Rowe, Northwest Justice Project

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About Pro Bono Net
Pro Bono Net is a national non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to justice for the disadvantaged. Through innovative technology solutions and expertise in building and mobilizing justice networks, Pro Bono Net transforms the way legal help reaches the underserved. Comprehensive programs including www.probono.netwww.lawhelp.org and www.lawhelpinteractive.org, enable legal advocates to make a stronger impact, increase volunteer participation, and empower the public with resources and self-help tools to improve their lives.

About the Equal Justice Conference
NLADA & ABAThe Equal Justice Conference, hosted by the American Bar Association and NLADA, brings together all components of the legal community to discuss equal justice issues as they relate to the delivery of legal services to the poor and low-income individuals in need of legal assistance.

The emphasis of this Conference is on strengthening partnerships among the key players in the civil justice system. Through plenary sessions, workshops, networking opportunities and special programming, the Conference provides a wide range of learning and sharing experiences for all attendees.

Originally Published as a Press Release


For Immediate Release

April 11, 2016
CONTACT: Karin Romans, Pro Bono Net
212-760-2554 x496 | kromans@probono.net

NEW YORK (April 11, 2016) – In honor of National Volunteer Week 2016, which takes place this week, April 10-16, Pro Bono Net would like to recognize the thousands of volunteer lawyers who make a huge difference for those in need.

As the number of people living in poverty has risen, so has the need for legal services that allow Americans to fully participate in society without falling prey to the loss of their housing, income or even their children.  According to the Legal Services Corporation, 63 million Americans qualify for civil legal aid, yet studies have shown that only 20% of the civil legal needs of the poor are being met.  Pro bono attorneys are often the only source of hope for those who can’t afford to hire a lawyer.

Pro Bono Net is a leader in innovative programs that increase access to justice. We currently have more than 100,000 members who are committed to public service.  National Volunteer Week 2016 provides an opportunity to recognize them for their efforts.

Pro Bono Net’s online platform, at www.probono.net, makes it easy for attorneys to get involved in pro bono work, saving them time and connecting them with opportunities and substantive practice resources such as training videos, practice manuals and sample documents. Volunteer lawyers can connect to opportunities through the National Pro Bono Opportunities Guide, which was co-developed with the American Bar Association Center for Pro Bono. Special, issue-specific opportunities are also available through The National Domestic Violence Pro Bono Directory, the Immigration Advocates Network and DisasterLegalAid.org.

Pro Bono Net also developed and maintains LawHelp.org, a public legal information portal with state-based legal referrals, know-your-rights information and a variety of self-help tools, and LawHelp Interactive (LawHelpInteractive.org), which is used by legal aid advocates, pro bono attorneys, and individuals representing themselves to prepare legal forms and documents Pro Bono Net works in partnership with more than 200 legal services organizations around the country.

Sponsored by Points of Light, National Volunteer Week was established in 1974 and has grown exponentially each subsequent year, with literally thousands of volunteer projects and special events scheduled throughout the week.

Volunteer ToolsVisit our Volunteer Tools page to learn more about the range of online resources available at probono.net to help mobilize and engage pro bono volunteers. Legal professionals wishing to get involved can join Pro Bono Net by signing up at www.probono.net. Attorneys can also search for volunteer opportunities atwww.probono.net/volunteer.

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About Pro Bono Net

Pro Bono Net is a national non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to justice for the disadvantaged. Through innovative technology solutions and expertise in building and mobilizing justice networks, Pro Bono Net transforms the way legal help reaches the underserved. Comprehensive programs includingwww.probono.net, www.lawhelp.org and www.lawhelpinteractive.org, enable legal advocates to make a stronger impact, increase volunteer participation, and empower the public with resources and self-help tools to improve their lives.


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For Immediate Release
March 31, 2016
CONTACT: Karin Romans, Pro Bono Net
212-760-2554 x496 | kromans@probono.net

National Legal Help Website Features Self-help Resources, Information, Referrals

New York – March 31, 2016– While our nation’s economy continues to improve, the enduring effects of the economic crisis continue to impact the lives of millions of Americans. LawHelp.org offers critical help obtaining and learning about much-needed tax credits.

LawHelp.org is the gateway to a national network of nonprofit statewide legal information portals dedicated to providing free online legal resources to individuals with limited means.  LawHelp.org helps low-income people find local nonprofit legal aid programs in all 50 states, answers to questions about legal rights, court information, self-help tools, links to social service agencies and more.

The LawHelp.org network offers a variety of free tools and information for those grappling with tax preparation including fact sheets for those facing a variety of special circumstances; information about rebates and tax credits, including the earned income tax credit; links to sites offering free tax filing; referrals to organizations that offer free or low-cost help; information on avoiding tax scams; and more.

“LawHelp makes it easier for struggling families to obtain important benefits as well as find needed information, by providing a gateway to tax resources, referrals and tools on one user-friendly site,” said Liz Keith, Program Director at Pro Bono Net.

LawHelp.org is operated by Pro Bono Net, the nonprofit leader in technology solutions to expand access to justice for those in need. LawHelp.org is available in English and Spanish and was developed with support from the Legal Services Corporation’s Technology Initiative Grant program.

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About Pro Bono Net

Pro Bono Net is a national non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to justice for the disadvantaged.  Through innovative technology solutions and expertise in building and mobilizing justice networks, Pro Bono Net transforms the way legal help reaches the underserved.  Our comprehensive programs, including www.probono.net, www.lawhelp.org andwww.lawhelpinteractive.org, enable legal advocates to make a stronger impact, increase volunteer participation, and empower the public with resources and self-help tools to improve their lives.  For more information, please visit www.probono.net.


Read More Press Releases HERE

 

 

For Immediate Release
March 23, 2016
CONTACT:
mediarelations@law.georgetown.edu
or Karin Romans, Pro Bono Net
212-760-2554 x496 | kromans@probono.net

Today, the MacArthur Foundation demonstrated its commitment to protecting voting rights by awarding a $1 million grant to the Voting Rights Institute.

Launched in October 2015, the Voting Rights Institute is a joint project of Georgetown University Law Center, the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy and the Campaign Legal Center. Established in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which nullified a key provision of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, the Institute offers opportunities for students, recent graduates and fellows to engage in litigation and policy work in the field of voting rights and to educate attorneys about the skills and best practices of voting rights advocates.

The initial phase of the Voting Rights Institute began in 2014 with a series of training sessions in New York, Columbus, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and Miami. In 2015, a training session was held in Chicago. To date, more than 400 attendees representing a diverse group of attorneys, law students and voting rights advocates have taken part in these activities. Georgetown Law has also provided a venue for training institutes.

As part of this effort, the Voting Rights Institute is also launching a new website, www.votingrightsinstitute.org, which provides voting rights information to the public, resources for attorneys working on voting rights litigation (including expert witness documents and sample legal documents), and a tool for the public to report voting rights violations. It also provides updates on events, publications and other resources to elevate public awareness of voter identification laws and voter registration restrictions. The site leverages a technology platform developed by Pro Bono Net, which is used to support broad-based networks of legal aid, civil rights and pro bono lawyers.

Georgetown Law Dean William M. Treanor said, “I could not be more pleased and proud that the MacArthur Foundation has chosen to honor the Voting Rights Institute and its crucial mission with this generous grant. The motto at Georgetown Law is, ‘Law is but the means, justice is the end.’ And nowhere is the need for justice greater than when it comes to protecting and preserving the right to vote.”

ACS President Caroline Fredrickson said, “This grant represents the tireless commitment of countless individuals to the idea that every American should have a voice in our political system. The Voting Rights Act – one of the most effective pieces of legislation ever passed – may be hobbled, but our dedication to the underlying democratic principles will endure.”

Gerry Hebert, executive director of the Campaign Legal Center said, “We are incredibly grateful to the MacArthur Foundation for investing in this important work. The Voting Rights Institute is preparing the next generation of attorneys, experts and activists to preserve our democracy and protect the ability of all Americans to vote. By providing resources, litigating, educating, training and conducting new and original research, the VRI is growing the pool of voting rights attorneys and experts at this crucial time when they are needed the most.”


About VRIVoting Rights Institute2

The Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder invalidated the coverage formula of the 1965 Voting Rights Act—the most effective civil rights law ever enacted—and has led to an assault on voting rights across the country. To respond to this crisis, the American Constitution Society, the Campaign Legal Center, and Georgetown University Law Center have launched the Voting Rights Institute to help attorneys, expert witnesses, law students, and the public combat discriminatory voting practices across the country.

 

Read More Press Releases HERE