Miami Law Health Rights Clinic

Health Rights Clinic: Innovative Projects

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Veteran Legal Support Initiative- VLSI

Our clinic was selected as a host site for two Equal Justice Works AmeriCorps Legal Fellows. The Equal Justice Works AmeriCorps Legal Fellowship program was created to address the gaps in the legal aid community through pro bono management and direct representation. Our Fellows are dedicated to providing legal services to the homeless and disabled veteran population of South Florida. The Fellows handle a wide range of cases, but their primary focus is on ensuring that our veterans are receiving the health care and public benefits they are entitled to.

The program provides an opportunity for our clinical students to work alongside the Fellows in a joint effort to assist the underserved veteran population. This collaboration creates a unique and innovative way to make a lasting impact on the South Florida veteran community while also helping to educate the next generation of lawyers.

See the impact of this program highlighted by a recent feature on NBC/in the Miami Herald.

Miami Herald - University of Miami legal clinic helps secure benefits for ill Army veteran
Miami Herald - Despite progress in backlog, thousands of Florida’s veterans still wait for benefits

Educating Tomorrow's Lawyers

Our Clinic has been recognized by ETL - an organization dedicated to putting knowledge into practice and encouraging and facilitating innovation and reform in legal education. Our Clinic is listed as an "Innovative Course" on their site for its exemplary innovative teaching.

ETL features the Health Rights Clinic in the videos "Health and Elder Law Medical Legal Parnership", in "A Law School Class in a Hospital", and Assistant Director Melissa Swain is interviews in "IAALS: National Impact".

Our clinic is also featured on page 13 of IAALS's 2013 Annual Report.

National Center for Medical-Legal Partnership (NCMLP)

NCMLP is a project of the George Washington University School of Public Health and Public Health Services' Department of Health Policy. They have recognized our clinic's medical-legal partnership as a health care delivery model that improves the health and well-being of low-income and other vulnerable populations by addressing unmet legal needs and removing legal barriers that impede health. See our profile page on their site.

Access to Justice Clinical Course Project (A2J Clinic Project)

Our clinic is one of 6 law school clinics chosen to participate in and create a course kit as part of this project. The mission of an A2J Clinic is: 1) to introduce law students to the technical skills required by a 21st Century law office, and 2) to produce technical resources that statewide legal aid organizations can use to deliver new automated content to legal aid websites across the country and lower the barriers to justice for low-income people. Read more about this project.

Temporary Protected Status(TPS)/Alternative Spring Break

The clinic has worked on behalf of Haitian nationals seeking temporary protected status. These efforts have included outreach to train community leaders and advocates on the process of applying for temporary protected status and have provided valuable assistance to a vulnerable community in need of humanitarian relief. In addition to assisting Haitians with the TPS process, the Clinic established a historic TPS Project alternative spring break program. The Clinic hosted visiting students from law schools across the U.S. to help with TPS cases. The Clinic also developed a comprehensive TPS training and processing model that may be universally deployed at any legal service institution or law school clinic. For the work with the Haitian Temporary Protected Status (TPS) process, the clinic received the prestigious Clinical Legal Education Association's Award for Excellence in a Public Interest Case or Project in 2010.

VETERAN LEGAL SUPPORT INITIATIVE-VLSI