Dear Friends,
Happy summer! From all of us at the City Bar Justice Center, I hope you and your loved ones and colleagues are well, and either have just enjoyed or soon will enjoy some well-deserved R&R. As I write, we celebrate the newest – and first Black woman – member of the Supreme Court, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson.
At the same time, I realize that, for many of us, the last few weeks have been challenging, with our nation’s highest court issuing decisions upending longstanding precedents protecting women’s basic human rights; preserving localities’ authority to defend against the scourge of gun violence; safeguarding the right to vote; and confirming government authority to protect the environment – all decisions that risk disproportionately disadvantaging historically oppressed communities. In times such as these, access to justice organizations like the City Bar Justice Center – together with you, our pro bono partners and financial supporters – must, and will, remain a force for equity and social justice by both taking solace and finding hope in the important work that we do. Together, we have the power, in every action we take as justice champions, to make a crucial difference for individuals and families seeking access to free, high-quality legal assistance that levels the playing field and affirms human dignity.
At this crucial juncture of pandemic recovery and social transformation, the City Bar Justice Center’s work is all the more important. For that reason, your participation in our work – whether through volunteering, services delivery, or financial support – translates to advocacy that expands access to justice. The newsletter that follows is a testament to that belief, and to what our collective efforts enable. If you need a pick-me-up in these days of beyond-tough headlines, peruse the Justice Center’s
2022 Impact Report highlighting work accomplished in FY2021-22 via legal services benefiting over 23,700 New Yorkers, and new developments ushered forward by our colleagues to address clients’ emerging legal needs as we collectively work to achieve pandemic recovery.
Thank you for your ongoing support, and please accept the whole Justice Center team’s warmest wishes for a safe, happy, and healthy rest of summer!

In solidarity,

Kurt M. Denk
Executive Director
  • New! The City Bar Justice Center’s 2022 Impact Report highlights work accomplished in the past year through our twelve civil justice projects and an enthusiastic cohort of advocates – pro bono supporters, community partners, volunteers, and donors. In 2021-22, our dedicated team continued to respond to emerging legal needs of New Yorkers who cannot afford private counsel. See a few highlights below and click here to learn more about our impact:   
  • The Justice Center has kicked off its FY22-23 Annual Appeal, a “Pandemic Recovery Equity Initiative,” to help us continue delivering innovative legal services that fuel pandemic recovery for New York City communities. Please make a donation to help our neighbors burdened by systemic socioeconomic barriers – immigrants, veterans pursuing disability claims, families residing in homeless shelters, seniors, small business owners, and others who deserve equal access to quality legal assistance.        
  • Welcome! We are excited to announce that Cesar Ruiz and Liam Broderick recently joined the Justice Center team! Cesar, our new Development Associate, will play a key role in managing the Justice Center’s fundraising efforts and will collaborate with the executive team to build more robust development strategies – with the goal to increase funding that enables our civil justice work. Liam, as Project Coordinator for our Neighborhood Entrepreneur Law Project, will provide critical support in streamlining free legal services to micro-entrepreneurs of limited economic means who seek financial stability. The Justice Center is also thrilled to welcome ten energetic undergraduate and law school students to our dynamic summer internship program! Keep an eye out for social media features spotlighting our summer interns as well as new staff.
  • Individuals burdened with consumer debt have long grappled with abusive debt collection practices. Recent state and federal regulations strengthen protections in consumer debt collection proceedings. Our Consumer Bankruptcy Project developed two Know Your Rights resources that provide a general overview of essential consumer protections. Click to access: Federal Debt Collection Protections | NY State Debt Collection Protections
  • VAP Responds to Proposed VA Changes Affecting Mental Health Needs: In April 2022, the Justice Center’s Veterans Assistance Project (VAP) published a comment in response to the VA’s Proposed Rule 2900-AQ82, a proposal to adjust the VA’s rating schedule which, in part, would pose challenges for veterans in substantiating their mental health-related claims. In response to the proposed rule, VAP made three recommendations to ensure fair VA evaluations for veterans seeking mental health benefits: Learn more.
  • Our Cancer Advocacy Project, with the support of Judges & Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert, developed a guide that provides a general overview of cancer-related housing discrimination laws in New York. It also contains information on basic protections for cancer patients that may experience housing discrimination. Learn more.  
Micro-Entrepreneurs Go Digital: How the Pandemic Stimulated Online Business Growth and Opportunities
Social Security Benefits Extended to Same-Sex Partner Survivors after Years of Legal Battles
VA Establishes New Rule for Reporting VA Debts to Consumer Reporting Agencies
The newsletter editor is Cheryl Lopez, the City Bar Justice Center's Director of Operations. For questions you may reach her at 

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