Integral to the Institute’s mission is a commitment to empowering clients and client communities so that they can articulate and advance their own legal strategies and resolutions---both in their individual cases and in advocating for changes in the legal system that will benefit all victims. We do this by making our faculty, staff and students available to support clients in a wide range of community based advocacy groups and institutions---offering basic abuse prevention services to individual clients, expedited referrals of community group members to cooperating lawyers for legal representation in more complex matters, assistance in securing institutional and financial support, and the opportunity to participate in collaborative research and demonstration grants.

First Year Opportunities for Involvement: Legal Assistance to Victims Project (DVI/LAV)
Students can participate in the work of the Domestic Violence Institute (DVI) beginning in their first year by volunteering for the Legal Assistance to Victims (LAV) project, a unique intersdisciplinary collaboration with Casa Myrna Vazquez, the Brookview House, and the Women’s Safety Network. Through funding from the Office for Violence Against Women, the LAV project seeks to connect individuals impacted by domestic violence with legal services, at those places they may first turn to for help. DVI/LAV team members will be working in the community at housing assistance programs and faith based organizations to provide direct advocacy and focused community education, with the goal of helping individuals identify options to move toward breaking the cycle of violence and poverty affecting their lives.


An important component of the DVI/LAV project is participation at the DVI Fall Domestic Violence Awareness Training, to be held Friday, September 12, 2014. Participants will learn about the basics of identifying domestic violence and begin examining the complexity of seeking solutions. In addition, the training will introduce fundamental domestic violence advocacy skills, essential to the volunteer advocate’s work in the project and beyond. Training details coming soon!

Upper- Level Student Opportunities for Involvement:
Upper-level students may enroll in an intensive, six-credit abuse prevention clinic that places students at the Dorchester Municipal Court and Roxbury District Court, advocating on behalf of victims seeking restraining orders. Participation in the DVI Fall Domestic Violence Awareness Training is not required but recommended.

Upper-level students may also apply to an array of coop placements among legal services organizations, small firms, government and non-profit agencies with whom the DVI has traditionally coordinated its work. Students may also propose work study, independent study or coop projects that advance the goals of the DVI including research into the rights of battered women and rape victims in the criminal justice system, in securing legal immigration status, for priority housing, medical care and mental health services and to ensure that they have the income to support themselves and their children.

Through a collaboration of faculty, staff and students, the DVI has begun a project to expand access to its training and resource materials to advocates throughout the Greater Boston area. Currently, advocates and staff in agencies and community groups serving battered women can register to receive “The HELP Book”, which provides a comprehensive and frequently updated list of referral resources to meet a wide range of victim service needs. For more information about the Domestic Violence Institute, please contact:

Margo Lindauer
LindauerDirector, Domestic Violence Clinic
Northeastern University School of Law and Bouvé College of Health Sciences
140 Dockser Hall
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
email: m.lindauer@neu.edu
(617) 373-8617

Jennifer Howard
Jennifer HowardSupervising Attorney Domestic Violence Institute
Northeastern University School of Law
140 Dockser Hall
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
email: j.howard@neu.edu
(617) 373-8249