National Lawyers Guild
The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) is a national organization concerned with creating and sustaining social change. The NLG currently has a growing membership of over 6,000 lawyers, law students, legal workers, and jail-house lawyers organized into local chapters in all areas of the United States. Since its founding in 1937, the Guild has supported progressive change and served as an alternative to the more conservative positions of the larger Bar Associations.
The work of the NLG includes such areas as housing, prison, anti-racism, affirmative action, sex discrimination, gay rights, labor and immigration. Many members choose to work on chapter projects or other legal/political projects while in school.
Each year, the NLG sponsors several events to support people who come to law school intent on using the legal system to promote social change. Annual activities include our introductory "Disorientation," the "How to Get a Job, Pay Your Bills & Not Sell Your Soul" career talk, as well as bringing students from Michigan Law to Yale Law School for the Rebellious Lawyering Conference. Attorneys regularly come to campus from the NLG’s Maurice and Jane Sugar Law Center for Economic and Social Justice in Detroit to provide advice and support to students. The chapter’s projects have involved working with several community groups over the years to provide legal support and legal observation at mass demonstrations.
While this legal/political work is an important part of being a Guild member, the social aspects of life are never ignored. Parties and potluck dinners are a regular part of NLG activities. New students are encouraged to attend even if they do not think they will be able to devote much time to Guild activities during their first year.
To learn more about the National Lawyers Guild, please contact us via e-mail.