The Urban Justice Center serves New York City's most vulnerable residents through a combination of direct legal service, systemic advocacy, community education and political organizing. Our 11 Projects assist clients on numerous levels, from one-on-one legal advice in soup kitchens, to filing class action lawsuits to bring about systemic change, to pushing social justice legislation forward.

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The Urban Justice Center’s Young Professional Network (YPN) is a...
Since 1981, the Urban Justice Center has served New York City's most vulnerable...

By all accounts, Kris Goldsmith started out as a good soldier.

He enlisted in the Army in 2003, and landed in Iraq two years later. He was trained to direct air and artillery bombardments, but was later given a new job: to chronicle for intelligence officials—in photos, interviews and written accounts—everything his unit encountered.

On May 15, 2005, the unit encountered a mass grave in a trash dump. As Goldsmith took photos in the 140-degree heat, surrounded by sewage, he watched the flies lift off the corpses and land on him.

Those with mental illness who are incarcerated are at a disadvantage while in prison and given less support from the prison system after release. Check out what MHP's Safe Reentry Advocate, Johnny Perez, has to say about this:

"Prisons should have tools to keep control within the prison," he said, "but I also feel that there's no situation in which a person needs to be treated inhumanely in order to hold them accountable." - Johnny Perez, MHP Safe Reentry Advocate

What happens when art meets social justice? That's what New York's Urban Justic Center (UJC) looks to explore its new series pairing advocating work with art by socially engaged artists.

Being a sex worker in the United States means that you are likely vulnerable to extreme rates of physical, sexual and emotional violence. SWP’s Kate D’Adamo discusses the phenomenon in this article.

A report released Monday by the New York City Independent Budget Office found that city spending on mental health services has not kept pace with the growth of its incarcerated mentally ill population, which now accounts for about 40% of all inmates.
“Inadequate staffing not only affects their ability to provide mental-health services but also their ability to provide the appropriate services,” said Jennifer Parish, director of criminal justice advocacy at the Urban Justice Center.

The majority of weapons found in ‪‎NYC jails‬ last year were inmate-made as found in a new report from the Board of Correction. However, the official view is at odds with this finding as there is a push to change city rules restricting inmate visits, which advocates are at odds with.

"This report calls into question the administration's focus on visitors as the source of weapons," said Jennifer Parish, Director of Criminal Justice Advocacy, at the Urban Justice Center's Mental Health Project.