Clinic Alumni Reflect on #WeAreResilient for National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Student attorneys in the Gender Justice Clinic (formerly Women and the Law Clinic) represent clients in a wide range of cases including family law, immigration, public benefits, domestic violence, employment, housing, education, wills/advance directives/probate, and student debt, with a focus on how clients’ gender, race, nationality, disability, and economic status affect their experiences in the legal system and within the lawyer-client relationship. GJC's cases sometimes include elements of domestic or gender-based violence.
In October, as part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, several alumni of the former Women and the Law and Domestic Violence Clinics and one alumna of the International Human Rights Clinic reflected on their careers as advocates against domestic and gender-based violence, gender-based violence using the hashtag #WeAreResilient, created for the 2021 DVAM observances by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Tracy Davis ('01), Managing Attorney, Bread for the City: "I've worked with survivors for 20 years and their resilience in the face of oppressive systems and abusive partners is astonishing. As a lawyer advocating for survivors, my goal is to change the legal system so that survivors don't have to be so resilient.”
Andrea Finuccio ('16), Staff Attorney, CASA: "I thought Clinic would be my only time in a courtroom. But after seeing the good that can come from direct legal services, I changed paths and now work towards making legal services available to the most vulnerable populations."
Erin Scheick ('08) Senior Supervising Attorney, Bread For the City: “As a domestic violence advocate and ally, I listen to survivors’ stories and give voice to what they need to heal. Centering survivors in domestic violence advocacy means respecting their decisions, supporting their needs, and fostering their resilience.”
Jamie Sparano ('12), Senior Staff Attorney, Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia: “At [Legal Aid], I often meet domestic violence survivors in the wake of their worst days. Whether the next step is to get a protection order or file for divorce, my job as their attorney is to give them the tools they need to move forward.”