2016 Equal Justice Works Fellow, Carolyn Rumer

Carolyn Rumer

Name of Host Organization: Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia
City, State: Washington, District of Columbia
Issue area: Domestic Violence
Sponsors: Latham & Watkins LLP

The Project

Break the cycle of violence by increasing economic security for low-income domestic violence survivors in DC by helping them obtain and maintain public benefits, child support, and employment.

The Inspiration

Need Addressed By Project: 
Domestic violence is a serious problem in the District of Columbia. In 2014, D.C. police received a domestic violence-related phone call every sixteen minutes. Survivors are typically in crisis when they are attempting to leave an abusive situation, making it hard for them to focus on longer-term strategies, such as enhancing economic security, for ending the cycle of violence. In 2014, 15% of homeless families in D.C. reported being homeless as a direct result of a violent incident.
The Right Person For This Project: 
Carolyn is the right person for the project because:
• Before law school, she worked with victims of domestic violence and sexual assault as an advocate at a rape crisis center
• She interned in Legal Aid’s Domestic Violence/Family Unit during law school and has provided direct representation for clients at risk of homelessness related to public benefits issues
• She is committed to providing compassionate legal advocacy to empower survivors and enable them to break the cycle of violence

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