Human Trafficking Clinic Named One of Most Innovative Law School Clinics

preLaw magazine recognizes BU Law’s newest clinic as one of 25 most innovative law school clinics

Boston University School of Law’s Human Trafficking Clinic has been named one of the most innovative among US law schools by preLaw. The magazine selected the clinic as one of 25 law school clinics it will honor for innovation in its winter issue.

To determine the honorees, preLaw sought nominations from law schools nationwide for clinics that were innovative in subject matter, structure, or community served. It reviewed nominations from more than 76 law schools, and narrowed the list down to 25. It recognized 15 clinics as the most innovative and 10 as runners-up. BU Law’s Human Trafficking Clinic is honored as one of the runners-up.

The Human Trafficking Clinic was established in Fall 2012, just the second program in the country to address this widespread human rights violation that involves as many as 27 million people worldwide. The clinic offers second- and third-year students the opportunity to provide direct client services, as well as the chance to study, critique and even shape political frameworks for amelioration.

Students represent real victims of sex and labor trafficking facing deportation and/or applying for T-visas, a special form of immigration relief for trafficking survivors. They engage in holistic, multi-disciplinary lawyering while building sustainable partnerships while collaborating with law enforcement, government officials, and non-government organizations. And they have the chance to impact the issue beyond their individual cases: last winter, for example, the clinic helped publish the first-ever human trafficking guide for Massachusetts attorneys, which aids lawyers encountering the considerable challenges of navigating the multitude of legal issues faced by victims of this crime.

Clinic Director Julie Dahlstrom, managing attorney at Lutheran Social Services (LSS), and her team at LSS helped found the clinic at BU Law to broaden the legal resources available for survivors of trafficking. The clinic also received indispensible support from BU Law alumna and Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley (’79), who has worked to address the state’s growing problem.

To learn more about BU Law’s Human Trafficking Clinic, watch the below video.