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2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Public Justice Center Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Civil Rights, Social Action & Advocacy, Crime & Law, Public Interest Law

Mission: The Public Justice Center (PJC) is one of Maryland’s premiere nonprofit legal advocacy organizations. We work with people and communities to confront the laws, practices, and institutions that cause injustice, poverty, and discrimination. We advocate in the courts, legislatures, and government agencies, educate the public, and build coalitions, all to advance our mission of “pursuing systemic change to build a just society.”

Programs: The human right to housing project (housing) seeks the realization of a human right to housing that is fair, affordable, habitable, and accessible with security of tenure and culatural adequacy.

the workplace justice project partners with low-wage workers, community and labor organizations, and fellow advocates to promote justice in the workplace and in the courts.

the appellate advocacy project uses appellate courts to advance progressive law reform and to achieve a right to counsel in basic human needs civil cases.

Community Stories

19 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I interned for PJC from January to April, under the Human Right to Housing team. I'm interested in becoming an attorney and working in the non-profit sector one day. I am happy to say that my experience at PJC was insightful and educational. As a non-profit, PJC is expansive in their mission's efforts for social justice, equity, and human rights. The organization serves individual clients regarding legal issues, engages in litigation and lobbying for certain laws, and participates in community initiatives, such as the Baltimore Housing Roundtable.

In addition, I appreciate PJC's staff members' commitment in staying at the organization for the long-term. I mention this, because some non-profits have the difficulty in retaining staff members for more than 1 year. I believe this commitment will create improvements and tangible results towards their future projects. One of my favorite moments during my internship was sitting at the staff meeting for their monthly racial justice training. I think it is important that the staff member at PJC are aware of their own biases and have a space to engage in these conversations with their coworkers.

As an intern I valued my experience at the office, because the office environment was always welcoming, friendly, and supportive. Overall, I recommend anyone who is passionate about social justice to participate at the Public Justice Center. I mention the word passionate, because working at PJC is an experience to expand one's knowledge on the injustices occurring in Baltimore City and the state of Maryland.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The PJC does not shy away from challenges. Rather, as a volunteer I saw how day in and day out the staff’s commitment to their work and clients was unyielding. The PJC provides legal services for members of the community who may otherwise be unable to access this critical resource. Their care, attention to detail, and willingness to always lend a hand is absolutely tremendous. I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to work for this incredible organization and I am still inspired by the people I met there and their work to this day.

Taylor23

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I interned with PJC for a summer and fell in love with the organization. The people are wonderful, and immediately accepted all of the new interns into the family. The organization is a group of passionate, determined, and very hardworking working individuals. Together they are doing amazing work to help the people of Baltimore. PJC will always have a special place in my heart and I am very thankful for the experience.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Over the years I have come to know many of the staff at Public Justice. They work on the cutting edge with innovative legal solutions - on cases where people are most exploited by employers, landlords, banks and others. And, I believe the fact that PJC creates a space for their client(s) to have full voice and decision making control in the direction of their legal representation is hugely important in our society.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My time at the Public Justice Center has been absolutely inspiring. Everyday I see employees who clearly embody the mission of the organization, working towards a just society. In my time at the Public Justice Center, I was treated as a member of the team and was able to truly work with the other employees in achieving the ultimate goal of systemic change.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with the Public Justice Center for more than 10 years and they are with out a doubt the most earnest and committed people I can imagine. But even more importantly they fill the most critical need I can imagine. The need for making sure that we don't just pay lip service to creating a just society, but that it we build one that actually works. PJC does not apply band-aids to social ills, it searches for root causes and tugs on them until they are removed and it often takes many years on a single issue, but the just don't give up.

Suzanne74

Volunteer

Rating: 5

With so many issues that taking up our time and energy, it is truly enlightening to know the work that is being done by the staff at the Public Justice Center, Inc. There can be no hope for people to move forward then that of having security in and the ability to practice a trade without barriers in the work place..... THERE CAN BE NO PEACE WITHOUT JUSTICE.......

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered at the PJC for a year and my experience was nothing short of inspiring and thankful. I observed how the staff worked tirelessly to pursue their goals for driving systemic change for the society. Major historical bills such as Montgomery County Paid Sick leave legislation, would not have been successful without PJC's strong involvement. Whether advocating for renter's rights, education rights, workers rights or other human rights PJC has been and is the place where society gets major benefits. I am glad to have served at the PJC and I will continue to support its mission to keep bringing positive change for the society.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Public Justice Center is an amazing organization. I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to work as a summer intern along side of such dedicated individuals. Through representation of clients and advocacy, they are making demonstrable change in the fight for social justice. In addition to their dedication to their work, I was really impressed by their commitment to openness and transparency. Having these ideals at the core of their organization helped to create a sense of community and a productive work environment.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The PJC is highly committed to their mission of addressing poverty at its very roots, and while that is a tall order, the team of talented and caring advocates show no signs of being daunted by it. Having worked there over the last year as a Lutheran Volunteer, I had the privilege of seeing the PJC in action and was inspired by attorneys and clients whose persistence has had an undeniable impact on the quality of life of low-income Marylanders. I am so thankful that I was able to have a transformative experience of professional and personal growth through my time at the PJC.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Public Justice Center is the best! Their dedication to their work, to help improve the lives of poor and marginalized Marylanders, is inspiring and it is woven into everything they do. I worked there as an intern over the summer and their office is very open and welcoming, there is a team spirit that pervades, and I think that helps their work be even more effective. They pay attention to what's going on on the ground, so their advocacy can be aimed at providing realistic solutions to real problems. They are genuine about their commitment to their communities and Baltimore is lucky to have them!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Public Justice Center is a fantastic organization. I am a current volunteer at PJC and I am extrememly impressed with how much the staff genuinly cares about their clients. Even though it is a small office the employees posess a wide aray of legal knowledge and skills. The mission of the organization is truely a sustainable approach to helping the most volunterable in society.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Public Justice Center is one of my greatest experiences. I have been working as a volunteer for a month now and it is incredible to see their work having so much impact in all marginalized communities!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Public Justice Center is great. The staff & environment is very professional and friendly. I am an intern in the Human Right to Housing program & the PJC is always looking for ways to help and serve the community better. They do this by taking different approaches such as creating partnerships with other organizations that have similar goals and get things done! The staff is so knowledgeable and passionate about everything they do so they always give 110% in their work. This opportunity has been very rewarding.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I spent a year at the Public Justice Center working full-time as a Lutheran Volunteer Corps member. The experience for me was life changing, and I feel incredibly lucky to have been able to volunteer with such an amazing staff.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I began volunteering with PJC 2 years ago. Since my retirement 12 years ago, I have volunteered with 4 other non-profits. PJC is the only one that has fully used my abilities. No xeroxing, answering phones, getting coffee; instead my experiences with young people, the correctional facilities in Maryland and program development have been utilized in a professional manner. The staff has treated me with respect and appreciation. My time spent with PJC is personally rewarding, and I believe in this organization's ability to make important and vital changes in our cit and state.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered for PJC for six or seven months a few years ago and I continue to interact with staff on a professional basis. I was and am very impressed with the professionalism, dedication, intelligence and charisma of everyone at PJC. The work they undertake makes a real difference for low-income Marylanders.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

While working at the Public Justice Center as a Jesuit Volunteer with the Human Right to Housing project, I was amazed by the multifaceted approach utilized. Within all of the projects there is a focus on preserving human dignity by advocating for those in a variety of ways. Another unique characteristic is the lateral versus a hierarchical structure that makes the Public Justice Center so successful. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy working at the Public Justice Center, I was incredibly proud of our work.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When I moved to Maryland in 2005, I was looking for an organization that had the potential to make significant impact and that was focused on helping those with limited access to resources (including housing, employment, education, legal protections, etc). I found that organization in the Public Justice Center. The breadth and depth of the issues that they work on is astounding. I first volunteered on their access to education for homeless kids project, enforcing the McKinney-Vento Act. And from there I was hooked by the mission of this organization and the people within the organization, who care passionately about these issues. I have since worked on a variety of issues with the PJC including ensuring basic health care and sanitation for detainees at the Baltimore City Detention Center, on their Civil Gideon project and increasing safeguards for tenants against retaliation from their landlords when they demand to have safe housing. The issues that PJC work on are tough ones, not easily solved. Yet when I spend my time with the PJC and their employees I see how systemic change is possible, and it makes me inspired to continue working on these issues that have such deep impact for those that are least protected in our society.