Broward LAW (Legal Assistance Workshop) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that will provide no-cost criminal legal defense and referral services to low-income individuals arrested in Broward County, Florida in order to foster racial and social equity in the justice system.
We take a holistic approach to keeping our clients from entering the courts in the future through access to services and rehabilitation.
We are opposed to the criminalization of poverty and the mass incarceration of people of color. We believe that people who are especially vulnerable need to be protected and afforded every right under the law.
WHAT WE DO
Broward LAW will provide the quality representation of a private attorney at no cost to the client.
In the United States there is a fundamental right to counsel (legal representation). While there exists an Office of the Public Defender, they are currently understaffed and underfunded. We are here to supplement the services of the Public Defender, not replace them. Furthermore, there are clients that earn too much to qualify for the Public Defender, but not enough to afford a private attorney. We help fill that need.
We believe in a comprehensive continuum of care for our clients. From the time they are arrested until their case is disposed, Broward LAW will be there for our clients. We have partnerships with numerous community organizations who assist our clients after their cases are over and with reentry into society. This includes:
- Access to healthcare
- Assistance applying to government programs
- Drug and alcohol treatment
- Employment skills and job placement
- Mental health treatment
- Parenting classes
- …and more!
We will mount a vigorous defense for each of our clients.
We will not deny service to any qualifying individuals unless staffing or funding levels do not permit us to take any additional cases.
If we cannot personally handle a case, we will use our referral network to try and locate an attorney to handle the case Pro Bono.
In November 2018, Jonathan Bleiweiss was released from prison. After witnessing the socioeconomic and racial disparity in prison, he knew something was wrong and that something had to be done about it. After conducting hundreds of interviews with inmates from around the state, Jonathan found that a common theme was that these people felt that they would have had a better chance were there another option.
Broward LAW is that other option.