Redefining public defense.

The Bronx Defenders Holistic Defense

Justine Olderman testifies before City Council on the stigma of mental illness

Managing Director of the Criminal Defense Practice Justine Olderman presented oral testimony before the New York City Council Committee on Courts and Legal Services earlier this month, on May 12. While commending the efforts that the Mayor and City Council have made thus far to address the over-incarceration of the mentally ill, Justine’s testimony called attention…

The Bronx Freedom Fund receives NCJA Outstanding Criminal Justice Program Award!

The Bronx Freedom Fund has been selected as the recipient of the 2015 National Criminal Justice Association Outstanding Criminal Justice Program Award for the Northeast Region. Each year, NCJA honors five outstanding criminal justice programs at the National Forum on Criminal Justice. Award winners are selected by a panel of criminal justice experts to recognize innovative…

The Bronx Defenders to be honored by Child Welfare Organizing Project

Next Wednesday, May 13, Bronx Defenders Executive Director Robin Steinberg, on behalf of The Bronx Defenders, will accept the honor of “Courageous Social Activist” from the Child Welfare Organizing Project (CWOP). As CWOP celebrates 20 Years of Activism next week, they will be honoring Dr. Terry Mizrahi, professor at Hunter School of Social Work and…

Emily Galvin to present at Bennington College’s Incarceration in America conference

Bronx Defenders Criminal Defense Attorney Emily Galvin will be presenting at Bennington College’s second conference in its Incarceration in America series: Effecting Change, on May 15–16, 2015. The conference is part of Bennington’s growing Incarceration in America initiative, which includes curriculum, visiting speakers, theatrical events, think tanks, and retreats to develop public policy and political action in…

The Bronx Defenders receives Community Organization Award from Brooklyn Law School

Earlier this week, Bronx Defenders Trial Chief Karen Smolar accepted the “Community Organization Award” on behalf of The Bronx Defenders from the Brooklyn Law School National Lawyer’s Guild Chapter and the Brooklyn Law School Public Service Office. The Community Organization Award is given to an institution or group which is dedicated to social justice and has…

Pro Bono props from The Bronx Defenders!

The Bronx Defenders works with a number of pro bono law firms on a range of matters, from isolated client case issues to ongoing projects. This support plays a crucial role in advancing our mission to combat the systemic challenges driving indigent people into the justice system, and to redefine public defense. To highlight just…

Bronx Defenders advocates present at National Association of Social Workers conference

Three Bronx Defenders advocates — Social Worker Sarah Knight, Parent Advocate Keston Jones, and Civil Legal Advocate Maria Monica Andia — will be presenting at the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), New York City Chapter conference “Social Work in the City: Dreams and Realities of Life in New York” on April 8, 2015. The conference aims…

Kate Rubin and Scott Levy testified before City Council on community policing

Bronx Defenders Managing Director of the Civil Action Practice Kate Rubin, together with Fundamental Fairness Project Director Scott Levy, submitted written comments on behalf of The Bronx Defenders to New York City Council’s Committee on Public Safety on March 3, 2015, discussing key issues to consider in community policing. The testimony describes two critical lenses through which…

Kate Rubin to speak at Jon Jay panel on community consequences of incarceration

On Thursday, March 5, 2015, John Jay College of Criminal Justice will be hosting the fifth installment of the 2014-15 PRI Occasional Series on Reentry Research, highlighting issues raised by the National Academy of Sciences’ groundbreaking report, “The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Causes and Consequences.” Bronx Defenders Managing Director of the Civil…

Runa Rajagopal to present at ABA National Summit on Collateral Consequences

Bronx Defenders Civil Action Supervising Attorney and Team Leader Runa Rajagopal will be leading a panel on Friday, February 27th at the First National Summit on Collateral Consequences in Washington, DC, presented by the ABA Criminal Justice Section in collaboration with the National Institute of Justice. Runa’s panel, entitled “Real Life Collateral Consequence: Stories from the Field,” will…

Justine Olderman Presented Testimony to City Council on Evaluating the Effectiveness of Indigent Defense

But in truth, traditional metrics fail to adequately measure effective representation…We cannot talk about caseloads, qualifications, training, or supervision without taking into account the radical change in our responsibility to our clients. We must first recognize that no matter how well organized, staffed, trained, supervised, and evaluated we are, we are not meeting minimum standards…

New York Law Journal: City Broadens Its Evaluation of Indigent Criminal Defense

New York City officials are testing a number of methods to assess the quality of indigent criminal defense, which, they say, is part of a broader attempt to make for a fairer criminal justice system. Though the city now tracks conviction rates, incarceration rates, case duration, charge reduction and disposition at arraignments, officials in Mayor…

WBAI’s On the Count: Immigration and Detention Post-Obama Executive Order

The Bronx Defenders Immigration Attorney Conor Gleason joined Abraham Paolos of Families for Freedom to discuss the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP) and the impact on families of deportations post-Executive Action Orders on WBAI’s “On the Count” with guest host Khalil Cumberbatch last Saturday, January 10, 2015. Listen to the segment here:

Thank you to everyone who supported The Bronx Defenders’ holiday gift drive

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all of our supporters, friends, and partners who contributed to The Bronx Defenders Annual Holiday Gift Drive, which allows our clients to give holiday gifts to their families when they otherwise would not be able to afford them. Thanks to the many contributions to our Amazon Wish List,…

Support BxD’s Annual Coat Drive!

As the winter gears up and temperatures drop, many of our clients lack sufficient winter coats to stay warm. In response, The Bronx Defenders carries out a coat drive each winter to make sure that clients or their family members have access to warm winter coats for free. Please consider donating a coat today! For…

The Bronx Defenders releases its report “The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in the Bronx and New York City”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 17, 2014 Contact: Scott Levy, The Bronx Defenders, 718-838-7833, ScottL@bronxdefenders.org The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in the Bronx and New York City New York – The Bronx Defenders released The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in New York, a report by The Bronx Defenders Fundamental Fairness…

Spotlight on BxD’s work with veterans and service members

Every day, many of The Bronx Defenders’ clients who are veterans, service members, or interested in future military service face unique challenges and issues that are often overlooked or ignored. Through our interdisciplinary and holistic approach, The Bronx Defenders represents veteran clients in Criminal Court, Family Court, and Housing Court, provides advocacy in other administrative…