Defender Legal Services Partnerships and Initiatives
Balance the Scales: Protect America's Right to Counsel
NLADA's Balance the Scales initiative seeks to establish a fair justice system in American through a national coalition committed to advocating for federal government reform and federal responsibility to improve indigent defense nationwide around the following principles: fairness; transparency; efficiency; uniformity and collaboration.
Please visit The Balance the Scales website to find out more information or sign on to the Statement of Principles.
Justice Standards, Evaluation and Research Initiatives: the NLADA/NCIDS Partnership
NLADA has partnered with North Carolina Office of Indigent Defense Services to develop a new standard for indigent defense in the use of empirical evidence to raise resources, assess policy and evaluate performance.
NLADA/ACS Right to Counsel Data Collection Pilot Project
NLADA and the American Constitution Society have partnered to develop a nationwide data collection project to gather information necessary to address the deep-rooted issues in our public defense services.
Please visit ACS Indigent Defense Observation Project webpage for more information about the project.
Defending Immigrants Partnership (DIP)
The Defending Immigrants Partnership (DIP) provides defense practitioners with the knowledge to vigorously represent non-citizen clients through the provision of information, training events and print and Web resources. The Partnership is a collaborative effort of NLADA, the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, the New York State Defender Association, and the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild.
National Committee on the Right to Counsel (NCRC)
The National Committee on the Right to Counselís (NCRC) short-term goals are to call attention to specific areas of deficiency in indigent defense systems around the country. Its long-term goals are to foster national consensus regarding the specific elements of reform and bring about systemic, statewide reform, including in many of the states that have proven the most resistant over time. The NCRC is an initiative of NLADA and the Constitution Project.
National Indigent Defense Collaboration
NLADA is working to build an expanded national infrastructure to promote and support the field by coordinating the exchange of expertise and resources among the many national organizations that provide significant support to indigent defense. The mission of the National Indigent Defense Collaboration is to ensure that every jurisdiction in the United States has a high quality, well-funded, indigent defense system, and that these systems are able to maintain quality and appropriate funding as conditions and needs change.
Race Equity Initiative
The Race Equity Initiative works with civil legal aid, public defender, civil rights, and community-based organizations to advance race equity as a core value in the equal justice community through training, education and technical assistance. The Race Equity Initiative seeks to expand our communityís capacity to address issues of race and ethnicity; racism; diversity; inclusion; cultural competency; structural inequality and equity in low-income communities, through advocacy and within our organizations.
BJA Capital Litigation Improvement Initiative
The National Consortium for Capital Defense Training works to expand the number of qualified capital defense practitioners by providing capital defense training for attorneys, and by establishing performance-based capital defense training models. In addition to NLADA, the Consortium includes the National Association for Criminal Defense Lawyers, Texas Defender Service, Federal Defender Program, American Bar Association Death Penalty Representation Project, the Innocence Project and capital defense projects at number of leading law schools.