The New York State Bar Association on June 5 will present the inaugural Award for Outstanding Achievements in Promoting Standards of Excellence in Mandated Representation to The Bronx Defenders. The winning organization has a staff of more than 100 criminal and civil attorneys, social workers, parent advocates, investigators and other staff and provides comprehensive, interdisciplinary public defense services to its clients.
The Association’s Special Committee to Ensure Quality of Mandated Representation developed the award to recognize attorneys, groups of attorneys or organizations that demonstrate consistent adherence to the highest professional standards; engage in innovative efforts to improve the overall quality of mandated representation; and/or promote steps by the Legislature, executive branch or judiciary to ensure the provision of high quality indigent defense.
“The Bronx Defenders has led a movement in indigent defense toward an interdisciplinary, client-centered model of advocacy, bringing together a variety of experts to address their clients’ real-life concerns,” said Vincent E. Doyle of Buffalo (Connors & Vilardo), chair of the Special Committee to Ensure Quality of Mandated Representation. “This organization ideally matches the Special Committee’s mission to provide high quality legal services to the poor and otherwise disadvantaged.”
The Bronx Defenders has several innovative programs, including The Civil Action Project, which provides clients and their families with comprehensive legal services by integrating civil representation into the organization’s criminal defense practice, in an effort to avoid the severe civil consequences that can result from encounters with the criminal justice system. Another program, the Family Defense Project, extends the same holistic legal representation and advocacy model used by The Bronx Defenders in criminal court for parents facing allegations of neglect or abuse.
The award will be presented June 5 during a luncheon at the State Bar Center in Albany.
The luncheon will be part of a day-long free CLE training session on indigent defense topics sponsored by the Special Committee to Ensure Quality of Mandated Representation.
NEW YORK STATE BAR ASSOCIATION, ONE ELK STREET, ALBANY, NY 12207 PH: (518) 463-3200 SECURE FX: (518) 463-5993