The Rights in Systems Enforced (RISE) Clinic, a new addition to the Loyola Social Justice Law Clinic, engages students in the direct representation of survivors of violent crime who seek to assert their rights in state and/or federal criminal enforcement systems, and require legal assistance with collateral civil matters. The RISE Clinic approaches survivor representation through a critical race and gender justice lens, which calls for culturally competent and trauma-informed legal counseling to center the interests of its clients. Through this work, the RISE Clinic joins a progressive intersectional anti-violence movement focused on survivor empowerment against private and state perpetrated harms. By foregrounding survivor voices, whose victimization is often complicated by their own criminality, the RISE Clinic opposes punitive legal regimes that overcriminalize and overincarcerate people of color and other groups disproportionately harmed by carceral approaches to public safety.
RISE Clinic students will defend survivors of violent crime in court through motion practice, briefings and oral arguments. For clients, not already entangled with criminal and/or immigration enforcement, students will provide comprehensive assessments and consultations that address their clients' needs and interests. Under the supervision of RISE Clinic faculty, students will learn to develop collaborative relationships with their clients to ensure client safety, social services support and access to civil legal remedies. If clients require RISE Clinic representation in criminal proceedings, students' survivor defense will utilize emerging legal tools to protect clients from prosecutorial overreach and assert survivors' rights if they face criminal charges. The RISE Clinic's individual representation of "victim-witnesses" and "victimdefendants" protects survivors' rights while advancing systemic change in law enforcement regimes that frequently re-exploit and dehumanize victims of violent crime. Survivor defenders grapple with the structural inequities that subject people of color, especially those who are also women, youth, LGBTQ+, disabled and immigrants to criminal violence, and also make them targets of criminalization.
The RISE Clinic is a semester-long course comprised of four units, two graded units and two externship units graded pass/fail. Students enrolled in the RISE Clinic should expect an average of sixteen hours per week for clinical course and legal work, which reflects the standard ratio of four hours of clinical work per one credit hour. The RISE Clinic will meet as a class for two hours, once per week. During class time, students will learn lawyering skills related to their client representation and also participate in case rounds to share and discuss the status of their respective cases. Students will also meet weekly with the RISE Clinic Director and Case Manager.
Interested students should submit their resume, transcript, and a one-page personal statement that explains their interest in survivor defense (no more than 350 words) through Symplicity by Oct.15.
Rights in Systems Enforced (RISE) Clinic
919 Albany St.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
Loyola RISE materials were produced under 2020-V3-GX-K022, awarded by the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in these materials are those of the contributors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.
RISE is a national project made possible with funding from the Office for Victims of Crime U.S. Department of Justice. RISE aims to provide crime victims with access to no cost legal services to aid enforcement of their rights. For more information about this national rights enforcement initiative, visit the RISE Project website at https://tinyurl.com/ncvli-RISE.