CCR Social Justice Conference 2013: Movement Lawyering in the 21st Century

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Join law students, lawyers and organizers from across the U.S. for a one-day conference in New York City that will explore how lawyers can support and build the power of social movements. By examining global and domestic models, the conference will highlight how lawyers and organizers can work together to grow the impact, scale and scope of social justice movements. Panelists will include movement lawyers from New York, Miami, Haiti and South Africa.

Conference Information

Keynote Speaker: Pablo Alvarado

Photo of Pablo AlvaradoAs an immigrant worker from El Salvador, Pablo Alvarado has a special connection to predominantly poor, Latin American immigrants who have traveled far from homes in search of work to support their families. Alvarado volunteered from 1991 to 1995 as program coordinator for the Institute of Popular Education of Southern California (IDEPSCA), where he developed and implemented literacy programs for immigrants. In 2002, Alvarado became the national coordinator of the newly created National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON), currently a collaboration of about three dozen community-based day laborer organizations. Under his guidance, NDLON works with local governments to help establish worker centers to move job seekers into places of safety. There, they learn how to handle exploitation, improve skills and gain access to essential services. NDLON strengthens and expands local worker groups and builds immigrant leadership by acting as a central resource for information.

Mr. Alvarado is the recipient of the Next Generation Leadership Fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation, which recognizes entrepreneurial, risk-taking and fair leaders who seek to develop solutions to major challenges of democracy.

In 2004, Pablo was also recognized by the Ford Foundation's "Leadership for a Changing World Program." In August 2005, TIME Magazine named Pablo among the 25 most influential Hispanics in the US.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

9:00 AM – 6:30 PM
(Registration will begin at 8:30 AM; Breakfast will be served; Pre-registration is required)

The City University of New York School of Law

2 Court Square, Long Island City, New York

Registration is free. The favor of a reply is requested by Tuesday, May 28, 2013, 11:59 PM EST.

View the conference schedule

About CCR

The Center for Constitutional Rights is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Founded in 1966 by attorneys who represented civil rights movements in the South, CCR is a non-profit legal and educational organization committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change.

CCR believes that social movements, and the organizations within them, are the engines of social change. CCR uses litigation proactively to advance the law in a positive direction, to empower poor communities and communities of color, to guarantee the rights of those with the fewest protections and least access to legal resources, to train the next generation of constitutional and human rights attorneys, and to strengthen the broader movement for constitutional and human rights. Our work began on behalf of civil rights activists, and over the last four decades CCR has lent its expertise and support to virtually every popular movement for social justice.

History has repeatedly taught us that the hard-won victories of yesterday can never be taken for granted. As society changes, new threats to our rights arise, even as old ones are defeated. CCR will continue defending progressive movements for social change and devising new strategies to ensure that fundamental rights are the rights of the many and not just the few.

About the Bertha Foundation

The Bertha Foundation believes that bright ideas, combined with resources and strong leadership, can create profound social impact on a local and global scale. The Foundation is committed to building the power of social activism to generate social, political, economic and environmental change. As a result, the Foundation believes in changing the world by investing in activists, lawyers, storytellers and social entrepreneurs looking to solve social problems. Ultimately, the Bertha Foundation is part of a movement addressing large scale social problems in groundbreaking ways.

The Bertha Social Justice Institute

From understanding history and theories of social change, to navigating the courts and the media, to drafting legislation and litigation on behalf of individuals and organizations—being a movement lawyer requires more skills than ever before. Despite growing demands, there are few resources and trainings dedicated to law students and lawyers committed to social justice.

To meet this need, CCR launched the Bertha Social Justice Institute (SJI), an innovative training institute, to build the next generation of people’s lawyers. The SJI supports existing and aspiring lawyers through a range of programs including: post-graduate fellowships, internships, regional conferences, international exchanges, national training institutes and movement strategy sessions.

The SJI is part of the new Bertha Justice Network, a global initiative connecting innovative human rights legal organizations from around the world. Aided by CCR’s connection to the network, we are preparing talented and creative law students and lawyers to work on behalf of communities, grassroots groups and social movements around the world. Along with supporting lawyers in the U.S., the SJI partners with legal organizations across the world—in Haiti, Palestine, India, Colombia, the Philippines, South Africa and Europe—to build strategic partnerships, opportunities and experiences amongst social justice lawyers globally.

Last modified 

August 12, 2014