Redefining public defense.

The Bronx Defenders In the News

amNewYork: Justine Olderman is defending the Bronx

“Our entire model is designed around the intersection of people’s involvement in various justice systems. Let’s say you were held in on bail. What are the implications in terms of your housing, your employment, your custody of your children, your immigration status? We do all of it. We follow the client wherever the client goes.”…

WNYC: Racial Disparities Persist in Who’s Arrested for Pot Possession

“We know that these [marijuana] arrests are really harmful and destructive to our clients, their families and their communities,” said Scott Levy, Special Counsel to BxD’s Criminal Defense Practice, noting that most of his clients are black and Latino males. “A single arrest for this can disrupt a job, a living situation, child care arrangements….

The Daily Record: County’s grant rejection generates criticism

“Holistic lawyers and social workers don’t intimidate child witnesses, but work collaboratively with parents to strengthen and stabilize their families. They help inform the child welfare investigative process, not impede it.” Emma Ketteringham, Managing Director of the Family Defense Practice, wrote a joint letter to the editor of The Daily Record responding to Monroe County’s…

HuffPost: Our Government’s Latest Betrayal

“The end of DACA and TPS violates the trust that about one million people placed in our Government and principles of fundamental fairness. TPS and DACA holders have lived, many of them with legal authorization, in our country for decades, some of them since they were months old. They have opened businesses, paid taxes, formed…

Letter to Editor on Foster Care and Opioids

“Children harmed by their parents should of course be protected. But any proposed approach to the opioid crisis that defaults to sending children to foster care once the specter of drug use is raised, and that excludes their parents, is deeply flawed.” Emma Ketteringham, Managing Director of BxD’s Family Defense Practice, responds to an editorial…

Olderman Steps Into Executive Director Position for Bronx Defenders

The New York Law Journal covers The Bronx Defenders’ exciting announcement that Justine Olderman, an experienced attorney with 17 years at the organization and a leader in the field of public defense, has been selected to take the helm as our Executive Director. “From staff attorney to managing director, I have been privileged to work…

Pass the (Right) Right To Know Act

“The questions confronting the Committee and Council are simple: Should civilians be informed of their right to privacy when there is no legal basis to search them? And should civilians who have routine interactions with the police, whether pulled over while driving or questioned as victims or witnesses, be entitled to know who they are…

BxD’s Scott Levy & Sarah Deri Oshiro speaks with BronxTalk

Scott Levy, Special Counsel to the Criminal Defense Practice and Sarah Deri Oshiro, Managing Director of the Immigration Practice sit down and speak with BronxTalk. Scott Levy discusses how to bring meaningful change to New York’s bail system: “The issue is that our bail statute is not used properly right now…If we started actually using…

The Place Where One Was Born Cannot Determine Our Access to Courts

Powerful HuffPost op-ed by Luis Mancheno, an immigration defense attorney at The Bronx Defenders about ICE’s intrusive presence in the courts depriving people access to due process: “ICE needs to be stopped and it needs to be stopped today…It is imperative that Chief Judge Janet DiFiore takes all the necessary steps to stop federal immigration…

Rise Magazine: ‘Poor’ Parenting— When poverty is confused with neglect

Erin Cloud, the supervising attorney for our Family Defense Practice, and Dinah Adames-Ortiz, our parent advocate, talk about how poverty is an incriminating factor against parents just trying to raise their children. “Every aspect of poor families’ lives is subject to supervision. Shelters have mandated reporters. HRA workers are mandated reporters. Public hospitals report overwhelmingly…

BxD’s Luis Mancheno speaks with NY1 Noticias’ Pura Política

Luis Mancheno, an immigration defense attorney at The Bronx Defenders speaks with NY1 Noticias’ Pura Política about the harmful impacts of ending Temporary Protected Status for Nicaraguans and Hondurans as well as the Diversity Visa Lottery. To watch the interview, click here.

A New York courtroom gave every detained immigrant a lawyer. The results were staggering.

In this investigation, Vox highlights the profound impact the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP) has on preventing immigrants facing deportation from being separated from their families and community. The Bronx Defenders proudly serves as one of three institutional providers of free representation to detained immigrants in removal proceedings at the Varick Street Immigration…

The truth is, ‘broken windows’ policing incentivizes lies

“The lies officers tell to justify the unlawful stops, searches and questioning are a natural byproduct of this policing strategy. Once we see the root of the problem, the answer becomes obvious: The NYPD leadership needs to stop holding on to the myth that ‘broken windows’ policing is necessary to keep New York City safe…

When Race Tips the Scales in Plea Bargaining

“If there are racial disparities in pleas in misdemeanor cases that lead to worse punishment of black people, it means a significant proportion of our criminal justice system is meting out punishment in a racially-biased manner.” —BxD’s Jenn Rolnick Borchetta and Alice Fontier on the stark racial disparities in plea bargaining that have devastating impacts…

Bad Bail Practices and Immigration Policy Led To My Client’s Death At Rikers

Powerful op-ed by BxD’s Anisha Gupta for The Marshall Project on the death of her client Selmin Feratovic, who had been incarcerated for almost seven months on Rikers Island but had not been convicted of a single crime: “Selmin was killed by a system that overcharged him, incarcerated him, ignored him, and ultimately failed to protect…

Live in a Poor Neighborhood? Better Be a Perfect Parent.

Powerful op-ed by BxD’s Emma Ketteringham in the New York Times about poverty and the child-protection system: “For more than a decade, my colleagues at the Bronx Defenders and I have represented thousands of parents like Eline in child-protection proceedings. A majority of them have never abused a child. Yet child services charges them with “parental…

When Should a Child Be Taken from His Parents?

“What should you do if child-protective services comes to your house? You will hear a knock on the door, often late at night. You don’t have to open it, but if you don’t the caseworker outside may come back with the police. The caseworker will tell you you’re being investigated for abusing or neglecting your…