Founded by law students in 1986, Equal Justice Works (EJW) mobilizes legal students and lawyers to "represent people and communities with serious legal needs who cannot afford to hire a lawyer." Studies show that 80 percent of the serious legal needs of 43 million low-income Americans go unaddressed each year due to a lack of access to affordable legal services. Leveraging both private and public funding, EJW offers a continuum of opportunities for law students and lawyers including postgraduate fellowships, support for law students to spend a summer doing public interest work, and assistance enabling graduates to repay educational debts so that they can take low-paying public interest jobs.
About the Grantee
1730 M Street NW, Suite 800, Washington, DC, 20036, United States
Grants to this Grantee
for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program
Equal Justice Works is a D.C.-based nonprofit with a mission to create opportunities for lawyers to transform their passion for equal justice into a lifelong commitment to public service. This grant supports the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. Through its participation in the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Coalition, Equal Justice Works aims to help indebted public service professionals (including public health, public safety, and public education professionals, as well as public interest lawyers) secure educational debt relief through Public Service Loan Forgiveness.
for a campaign to preserve public service loan forgiveness
Equal Justice Works is the largest provider of public interest opportunities for law students and lawyers and strives to create a just society by mobilizing the next generation of lawyers committed to equal justice. Funding from the Hewlett Foundation will support their campaign to preserve the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, enacted in 2007. The PSLF program encourages individuals to enter and continue working in full-time public service employment, including public interest law. Advocacy efforts to protect PSLF will include educational meetings, pitching earned media attention, leveraging influential partnerships, and disseminating information for coalition members to use.
for diversity, equity and inclusion work
Equal Justice Works is the nation’s largest facilitator of opportunities in public interest law. The organization supports the vision that a community of lawyers committed to public service can fulfill our nation’s promise of equal justice for all, and therefore has an obligation to recognize and prioritize DEI as a means to overcome barriers to "equal justice." Funding from the Hewlett Foundation will help the organization align its work with these values and authentically represent, support, and serve staff, board members, fellows, law students, and the public service community who are diverse in background, identities, and experiences. This grant will support the diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) work of the organization.