Because people with mental illnesses are particularly vulnerable to income, housing, educational, and familial instability, Medical-Legal Partnerships (“MLPs”) can be a helpful resource for them and their doctors. However, they can also harm clients and lawyer-client relationships. MLPs affirm the medical model, are entangled in harms perpetuated by hospitals and other providers—including forced treatment—and do not account for the traumatic history between people with mental illnesses and the medical profession. This Article proposes that in order to take advantage of MLPs’ proven strengths and serve people with mental illnesses in an autonomy-respecting way that builds power for them and their communities, the MLP model must be adapted. The best way to do that is by incorporating the tenets of community lawyering and partnering with non-medical, recovery-centered community centers called clubhouses to form “Clubhouse-Legal Partnerships.”
The practice of reflection supports a community lawyering practice made up of self-aware, compassionate, and resilient lawyers who are committed to action—committed to working in solidarity with clients and communities in order to achieve radical transformative social change.
This essay discusses how individual cases can inform systematic change, and the practice of preventative law in the medical-legal partnership realm.
Culture provides a foundation for the way we experience the world. Rooted in traits such as ethnicity, race, religion, and gender identity, culture influences people’s values, behaviors, and beliefs. Scholars have described culture as something akin to “the air we
The disciplinary exclusion of children with behavioral health conditions is rampant in public schools in the United States. The practice of suspending and expelling students with behavioral challenges, caused in part by a lack of understanding of the causes of