Proskauer For Good

The Proskauer corporate social responsibility and pro bono blog

Thousands of women in the United States, who never knowingly or intentionally entered the sex industry, find themselves trapped in a world of unspeakable abuse. These women, whether in illicit massage parlors or other abhorrent situations, are routinely arrested despite being the victims – while traffickers and buyers with actual culpability routinely are not. To understand their plight, imagine you are a single parent with three children, recently unemployed, and faced with mounting debt.  You…
Last week, Proskauer’s Chicago office, in partnership with HSBC Bank (HSBC), hosted a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) clinic to assist 12 pro bono clients with preparing their DACA renewal applications. The DACA program provides eligible, undocumented immigrants who came to the United States before the age of 16 with a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation, along with work authorization and the ability to apply for a social security number.  While…
Following my experience assisting immigrant families at the border, I have shared the story, the urgent challenges, and the need for change with many audiences. I have presented the same PowerPoint of my experience enough times that it’s now possible for me to click through the slides and images, words flowing easily, despite the devastating reality of the problem which is that families seeking asylum are freezing cold and hungry, held in cages and…
According to the most recent FBI statistics, reported incidents of hate crimes increased by 17 percent in 2017, rising for the third consecutive year. The FBI determined that the primary motivators of these crimes were race, ethnicity, religion and sexual orientation.1  When compounded with the rise in anti-immigrant sentiment, and recent changes in U.S. policy that negatively impact immigrants seeking asylum relief, there is an enormous, urgent need for effective pro bono legal services…
For many transgender people, undergoing gender-affirming surgery is a crucial step toward a healthy gender transition. While not all transgender people need or want gender-affirming surgeries to be part of their transitions, receiving such surgeries may be life saving for some who do. The American Medical Association has established that gender-affirming surgery is effective and medically necessary for many individuals diagnosed with gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria is a serious medical condition resulting from an incongruence…
Pro bono projects can provide some of the most meaningful and interesting moments in a lawyer’s career. It’s usually an easy decision to say “yes” when presented with a pro bono opportunity, because this type of work gives young lawyers invaluable experience and offers all lawyers a purposeful way to give back to their communities. Unfortunately, at the same time this work can be incredibly stressful, challenging, and emotionally taxing, and may lead to secondary…
Last month, Proskauer filed an amicus brief on behalf of Sanctuary for Families — a leading non-profit organization advocating for victims of domestic violence and sex trafficking —specifically to advocate for allowing criminal prosecutions based on lawfully recorded telephone calls that abusers in pretrial detention use to coerce victims not to testify. According to some reports, up to 80% of victims of domestic abuse and sex trafficking recant their testimony of the abuse and refuse…
Proskauer honored its lawyers and staff who have made significant contributions to the Firm’s pro bono and corporate social responsibility programs this year at its 11th Annual Golden Gavel Awards ceremony on January 22. The following is a list of recipients alphabetically by project. Protecting Voting Rights These attorneys and paralegals ensured that a team of more than 150 volunteers from Proskauer and partnering corporate clients would be ready and able to answer nearly 2,000…
Proskauer is proud to lead conversations that foster insight into the pressing issues facing our communities. Together with Partnership with Children (PwC), we hosted experts in various fields on January 15 to discuss How Poverty and Trauma Affect Healthy Brain Development. Our panelists included Margaret Crotty, Executive Director of PwC, Dennis M. Walcott, President and CEO of Queens Library, and Dr. Olajide Williams, Chief of Staff of Neurology, Director of Acute Stroke Services, and…
Throughout law school I worked with the Suspension Representation Project (SRP) as an advocate in New York City public school suspension hearings, and am now helping to coordinate a new project at Proskauer through our partnership with SRP and The Center for Popular Democracy.  This post will examine the school suspension process in New York City, and the great need for increased attention to this issue and representation for the students in these hearings.…