Dramatic quote from Dr King engraved on a wall


What We Do & Why

What We Do

We fight for Economic Justice, Housing Justice, Health Justice, and Cultural & Community Justice. We represent people in civil cases, not criminal, and we do not typically handle personal injury or family law.

We provide legal advice, counsel, and representation;  policy advocacy; community education; and support for community organizing.

We represent people who are living at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level ($50,200 per year or less for a family of 4 in 2018.)  We work to help people be treated fairly and to lift themselves out of poverty. We believe:

  • Everyone should be able to meet their basic needs;
  • Health is a fundamental aspect of the human experience;
  • Home is the cornerstone on which people build better lives for themselves and their families; and,
  • That overcoming inequity is key to enhancing the quality of life in our region.
  • Legal Advice, Counsel, & Representation

    We are here to help.  We answer questions, give legal advice and counsel, and provide legal representation. Learn more about the kinds of legal help we offer.

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  • Policy Advocacy

    We advocate to change laws, policies, and systems to advance equity and build pathways out of poverty.

  • Community Education

    We provide community education related to all of our legal practice areas to help empower people, agencies and providers to know and advocate for individuals’ rights and create positive change.

  • Community Organizing

    Meaningful change is accomplished when we come together. Learn more about our current community organizing initiatives, including forming labor and housing cooperatives, and ending childhood lead poisoning in Syracuse by 2025.

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Unmet Legal Need

Icon showcasing how many New York residents go to court without representation
1.8 million New Yorkers go to court without an attorney for civil cases each year.

Icon showcasing the legal need for low-income New York residents

65% of the civil legal problems reported by low-income New Yorkers in the past year received no legal help.

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91% of Upstate New York tenants facing eviction did not have the help of an attorney.

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1/3 of the residents in the 13 Upstate New York counties we serve are at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level ($50,200 per year or less for a family of four in 2018)