Advocates work directly to help clients avoid the devastating impacts of arrest and support clients to move forward from the criminal legal system with their future opportunities intact. Meanwhile, Advocates also receive first hand exposure to the criminal legal system and a life-changing public service experience.
Every day is different as an Advocate, whether you're working directly with a client, building awareness of your services in the community, or collaborating with a community partner.
Connect with clients to learn more about the problems they are facing and their goals
Depending on your clients’ needs, creatively assist with issues like clearing past criminal convictions, preparing for child services interventions, accessing public benefits, maintaining work licenses, finding and maintaining housing, and obtaining mental health counseling or substance use treatment
Partner closely with attorneys to provide relevant information and documents for clients’ criminal case and other legal issues
Build a network of local services, community organizations, and civil attorneys so that you can appropriately refer and advocate for clients
Use your detailed knowledge of court processes and requirements to help your clients navigate these institutions
Advocate for clients with service providers, attorneys, judges, landlords, employers, and others, telling your clients’ stories in a compelling way that gets results
Collaborate with your teammates at your host office and nationwide to share knowledge, brainstorm solutions, and build a community
One of our Advocates had a client who was a retired veteran with severe and chronic PTSD. He had gotten into an argument with his landlord and was being held in jail when our Advocate met him. Based on information the Advocate shared about the client’s background, the prosecutor agreed to drop the charges down to misdemeanors and let the client out of jail—if he had a place to go. The Advocate didn’t just call a housing program for veterans. She refused to take “no” for an answer and worked her way to the program’s Executive Director, impressing him with her client’s story and convincing him to offer the client a bed the next day. To secure the agreement, the Advocate promised to personally drive her client from the jail to his new housing. As a result, the prosecutor gave this client a favorable disposition and a veteran has a new home.Learn more about becoming an Advocate ›