skip to content

Pro Bono Net

Lawyers serving the public good.

The Lawyers' Earthquake Response Network mobilizes support for human rights and justice in Haiti

Friday, January 29, 2010

  • By: Brian Concannon
  • Organization: Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti

The Lawyers’ Earthquake Response Network (LERN) is a national network of lawyers in the U.S. working with Haitian lawyers to implement a legal response to the earthquake in Haiti. LERN employs a human rights-based approach to advocate for the victims of the earthquake and reduce Haiti’s vulnerability to future natural, political and economic stresses. LERN projects include fighting for safe housing, for long-term, effective international assistance to Haiti, and for immigration opportunities for Haitians in the U.S. LERN will also develop replicable models for international legal responses to large-scale natural disasters.

LERN is led by the U.S.-based Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH), and the Haiti-based public interest law firm, the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux.
 

Bureau des Avocats Internationaux
The BAI has fought for human rights in Haitian courts since 1994. BAI’s Managing Attorney, Mario Joseph, is Haiti’s most prominent human rights lawyer.

BAI’s achievements include:

  • successfully prosecuting the Raboteau Massacre case, which led to the convictions of the top military and paramilitary leadership of Haiti’s 1991-94 military dictatorship;
  • winning $430,000 in court-awarded damages for the Raboteau massacre victims; and
  • securing acquittals or dismissals for over 50 political prisoners.


Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti
IJDH supports BAI and brings the fight for justice in Haiti to powerful countries. IJDH’s Director, Brian Concannon Jr., Esq., lived in Haiti for eight years and is a leading international expert on human rights in Haiti.
IJDH’s achievements include:

  • winning Yvon Neptune v. Haiti, the only Haiti case ever decided by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights;
  • providing the single best source of information on human rights in Haiti through its website, www.HaitiJustice.org; and
  • collaborating with dozens of law school clinics and law firms in the U.S. to advance justice for Haitians in U.S. and international courts.

Join the Network

LERN was launched on January 17, 2010. Within the first week, over 175 lawyers, law professors and law students joined the network.

LERN will provide overall coordination of projects through a listserve and an interactive webpage. Individual projects will be coordinated through project leaders, who will be leading experts in the relevant field.

To join LERN, please visit http://groups.google.com/group/Lawyer-Earthquake-Response-Network. For more information about the network or our other work, please contact IJDH’s Director, Brian Concannon at Brian@ijdh.org or see our website, www.HaitiJustice.org.
 

Topics:

Thanks to PBN Sponsors:

  • Practising Law Institute
Pro Bono and legal aid attorney resources - Pro Bono Net

Volunteer Profile

Pat Layden, a private practitioner in McAlester, Oklahoma, has volunteered many hours to promote equal access to justice in Oklahoma. He served Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma Inc. as Board member and past President of the Board and as a pro bono attorney. Pro Bono Net thanks Legal Aid Services of Oklahama (LASO) for sharing this inspiring volunteer story about his work on a hotly contested child custody case where a young mother, with a critically ill infant was involved in a custody battle over her one–year old daughter. LEARN MORE

Not a lawyer?

Need legal help?

LawHelp.org

Legal info for the public

Webby Winner Logo

LawHelp.org Named Best Law Site in 2007 Webby Awards