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2024 Summer Forum Preview: Civil Rights & Civil Liberties Panel

20 June 2024   Blog, Featured

Join us for an insightful panel event focusing on civil rights and civil liberties through the lens of public interest law and pro bono service. This event brings together distinguished legal experts and dedicated advocates who will share their experiences and perspectives on safeguarding fundamental freedoms and promoting social justice. Discover how pro bono efforts are making a significant impact in the fight for equality and learn about the ongoing challenges and opportunities in the realm of civil rights advocacy. 

Don’t miss this opportunity to engage with leaders in the field and deepen your understanding of these critical issues. The Civil Rights & Civil Liberties Panel is on Thursday, June 27 from 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm ET. Register here to join the virtual conversation. 

2024 Summer Forum Preview: Poverty Law Panel

07 June 2024   Blog, Featured

People living in poverty struggle daily to meet basic needs for themselves and their families. Critical relief: housing, nutrition, health care, fair employment, and protection from violence, often turn not on rights but on access to justice. Often access to justice remain out of reach for many trying to navigate complex rules and requirements. While legal representation can transform an individual’s ability to access what they need to survive and thrive, low-income litigants are the least likely to have an attorney to help them through the legal process. Pro bono attorneys who fill this gap literally save lives.

Learn more about the wide-ranging legal issues individuals living in poverty face and what pro bono opportunities are available in D.C. and across the country to help address these needs at our 2024 Summer Forum Panel on Poverty Law on Thursday, June 27 from 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm ET. Register here to join the virtual conversation.

2024 Fellowships 101 Recap

05 June 2024   Blog, Featured

On June 3, we welcomed a panel of fellowship directors and student fellows from the Skadden Foundation, Justice Catalyst, and Equal Justice Works to discuss the process of obtaining a fellowship for current law students.

For law students pursuing public interest law, fellowships are one of the most effective postgraduate pathways into a career. Our two fellow panelists spoke about their unique exposure to extensive legal experience as well as the combined learning from seasoned professionals and a cohort of attorney fellows. Fellows benefit from the institutional memory of their host organizations, gain access to a public interest alumni community, engage in meaningful work, and receive support as they begin their careers. 

2024 Summer Forum Preview: Non-Litigation Pro Bono Panel

04 June 2024   Blog, Featured

When we say pro bono, many think of assisting litigants through navigating the many ins and out of the court system, but that’s not the only place our legal system asks non-lawyers to have an understanding of the law. There are many opportunities for pro bono representation in transactional matters. From setting up businesses to providing tax advice, knowing the right forms and how to fill them out can make all the difference. Trained lawyers can draft wills for veterans, navigate uncontested divorce proceedings, research novel issues, and much more. If you want to support your community but hope to stay out of the courtroom, this is the panel for you! 

Learn more about the impactful opportunities to get involved at our first substantive panel discussion on Wednesday, June 26 from 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm ET. Register here to join the virtual conversation.

Welcome our 2024 Summer Intern, Delphine Gareau!

03 June 2024   Blog, Featured

Meet Our Summer 2024 Intern: Delphine Gareau Delphine is a rising junior at Boston College from Concord, Massachusetts. She is a pre-law student majoring in International Studies with minors in Environmental Studies and Religion and American Public Life. This summer, she is participating in The Fund for American Studies Academic Internship Program, taking economics and public policy courses while interning with WCL. At Boston College, Delphine currently serves as the Student Senate Academic Affairs Committee Chair, a Peer Advisor for the International Studies Department, and the Junior Captain of the Club Equestrian Team. With aspirations for a career in law, she will assist the Washington Council of Lawyers with legal research, events, social media, and writing projects. Welcome to the team, Delphine!

Best Practices in Pro Bono: The Role of Artificial Intelligence in Pro Bono and Access to Justice Recap

24 May 2024   Blog, Featured

On May 23, we welcomed folks from across the legal profession and in the tech world to discuss the role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in pro bono service and access to justice. When thinking of AI, many minds go to the newest and hottest technologies like ChatGPT and Microsoft Copilot. These are called generative AI, which refers to technologies that can create original content such as text, images, video, and audio. But did you know that AI has been around for a while and lawyers, especially, have been relying on it heavily? When you’re doing a quick Google search or reading through the list of cases suggested in Westlaw, you’re using AI. That older and commonly used version of AI is called predictive AI. Predictive AI looks backwards at an existing data set and predicts outcomes based on that data. 

2024 Summer Forum Preview: Environmental Justice Panel

23 May 2024   Blog, Featured

Environmental law issues impact residents in D.C. and across the country in a variety of unforeseen ways. People in poverty and communities of color are more likely to live in environmentally unhealthy places. Climate change motivates immigration all over the globe. Join us for a summer forum panel discussion about the many ways environmental justice implicates human rights and racial justice. We are excited to hear how legislative advocacy, individual representation, class action and other tools can bring us closer to achieving environmental justice. Learn more about these important topics at our 2024 Summer Forum Panel on Environmental Justice Panel on Wednesday, June 26 from 12:00 – 1:30 pm ET.

2024 Summer Forum Preview: Criminal Law & Death Penalty Panel

21 May 2024   Blog, Featured

The criminal legal system remains at the forefront of national discourse, especially concerning the pervasive issues of abusive policing, mass incarceration, and the death penalty. These systemic problems not only undermine individual liberties but also perpetuate cycles of injustice and inequality within our communities. Addressing these challenges requires a deep examination of current practices and the implementation of transformative reforms to protect fundamental human rights and ensure equitable justice for all.  Learn more about these important topics at our 2024 Summer Forum Panel on Criminal Law & Death Penalty Panel on Wednesday, June 26 from 12:00 – 1:30 pm ET.

Join Our Board!

08 May 2024   Blog, Featured

Applications for the 2024-2025 board year are now open! Serving on our board is both professionally and personally rewarding and a great way to become more involved with our organization and the DC public-interest community. Here is a peek at what’s involved:

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