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Vanessa Selbst

Urban Justice Center

ujc_logoFor 30 years, the Urban Justice Center has served NYC’s most vulnerable residents through direct legal service, systemic advocacy, community education, and political organizing.  The Urban Justice Center assists its clients on numerous levels, from one-on-one legal advice in soup kitchens, to helping individuals access housing and government assistance, to filing class action lawsuits to bring about systemic change.

The UJC is composed of ten distinct Projects.  These are the Community Development Project, the Domestic Violence Project, the Safety Net Project, the Human Rights Project, the Iraq Refugee Assistance Project, the Mental Health Project, the Peter Cicchino Youth Project, the Sex Workers Project, the Street Vendor Project, and the Veteran Advocacy Project.

Flex Your Rights

flexFlex Your Rights (Flex) is an educational nonprofit launched in 2002, focused on improving the constitutional literacy of all Americans.  To that end, Flex creates and distributes the most compelling, trustworthy, and practical know-your-rights media content available.

Check out the Flex Your Rights YouTube channel to see awesome videos and learn how to flex YOUR rights!

The Innocence Project

The Innocence Project is a national litigation and public policy organization dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted people through DNA testing and reforming the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice.

Make the Road New York

Make the Road New York* promotes economic justice, equity and opportunity for all New Yorkers through community and electoral organizing, strategic policy advocacy, leadership development, youth and adult education, and high quality legal and support services.

*Caminante, no hay camino. Se hace el camino al andar. Searcher, there is no road. We make the road by walking. –Antonio Machado, Selected Poems, (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1982). 

American Civil Liberties Union

The ACLU is our nation’s guardian of liberty, working daily in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in this country.

The ACLU also works to extend rights to segments of our population that have traditionally been denied their rights, including people of color; women; lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people; prisoners; and people with disabilities.

If the rights of a society’s most vulnerable members are denied, everybody’s rights are imperiled.


Equal Justice Initiative


The Equal Justice Initiative is a private, nonprofit organization that provides legal representation to indigent defendants and prisoners who have been denied fair and just treatment in the legal system.

EJI litigates on behalf of condemned prisoners, juvenile offenders, people wrongly convicted or charged with violent crimes, poor people denied effective representation, and others whose trials are marked by racial bias or prosecutorial misconduct. EJI works with communities that have been marginalized by poverty and discouraged by unequal treatment.


Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network


GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, is the leading national education organization focused on ensuring safe schools for all students. Established in 1990, GLSEN envisions a world in which every child learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. GLSEN seeks to develop school climates where difference is valued for the positive contribution it makes to creating a more vibrant and diverse community.

The Southern Center for Human Rights


The Southern Center for Human Rights provides legal representation to people facing the death penalty, challenges human rights violations in prisons and jails, seeks through litigation and advocacy to improve legal representation for poor people accused of crimes, and advocates for criminal justice system reforms on behalf of those affected by the system in the Southern United States.