Photo of Christian Piatt

Christian Piatt

  • Hosted by Homeless Persons Representation Project, Inc.
  • Sponsored by Covington & Burling LLP, Northrop Grumman Corporation
  • Service location Baltimore, Maryland
  • Law school University of Baltimore School of Law
  • Issue area Veterans' Rights
  • Fellowship class year 2018
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Christian will eliminate legal barriers to stability and promote integration for justice-involved veterans through direct civil legal representation, outreach, education, and advocacy.

The justice system incarcerates veterans at a significantly higher rate than non-veterans, and the difficulties leading to their criminal conduct often relate to their service. The Justice Involved Veterans Project (JIVP) provides civil legal services to veterans. Today, veterans treatment courts provide treatment for some veterans in lieu of incarceration, but true reintegration requires more than avoiding jail. This project provides civil legal services that eliminate barriers to employment so that veterans leaving treatment programs can return to the community with dignity and honor.

Fellowship Highlights

In the past year, Christian has:

  • Provided direct representation to more than 30 veterans participating in treatment courts in Dorchester, Anne Arundel, and Harford Counties
  • Assisted a veteran in obtaining 100% service connection for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and secondary substance addiction
  • Expanded the JIVP to serve justice-involved veterans not currently enrolled in treatment courts
  • Conducted weekly legal clinics at the Maryland Center for Veterans Education & Training (MCVET)
  • Collaborated with an Equal Justice Works Fellow alumna to host an event at MCVET where veterans met with sponsor volunteers to discuss discharge upgrades
  • Presented the JIVP to judges, county officials, and Bar Associations in Harford and Howard Counties
  • Met with Circuit and District Court judges and spoke at Bar Association events to provide an overview of our program and discuss alternative solutions where a treatment court may not be feasible

Next Steps

In the next year, Christian plans to:

  • Expand intake sites to include the Drug Treatment Court in Harford County
  • Deliver a VA Certification program on Veterans Benefits, which has been accredited by the Maryland State Bar Association
  • Identify a network of service providers to continue providing no-cost civil legal support to veterans enrolled in treatment courts at the conclusion of this Fellowship

Meet Other Fellows Like Christian

View All

Jessica Marsden

Host: University of North Carolina School of Law Clinical Program

Sponsor: Kirkland & Ellis, Raytheon

Michael Stone

Host: Homeless Persons Representation Project, Inc.

Sponsor: Hogan Lovells LLP, Lockheed Martin Corporation

Jonathan Glover

Host: Stetson University College of Law Veterans Advocacy Clinic

Sponsor: Greenberg Traurig, LLP, The Florida Bar Foundation

Current Fellow

Eleyse D’andrea

Host: William & Mary Law School

Sponsor: Hogan Lovells LLP, Lockheed Martin Corporation