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Jasmine Robinson

  • Hosted by Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability
  • Sponsored by Apple, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
  • Service location Fresno, California
  • Law school University of California, Los Angeles School of Law
  • Issue area Environmental Justice, Housing - Affordable Housing/Microfinance
  • Fellowship class year 2023
  • Program Design-Your-Own Fellowship

The Project

Jasmine (she/her/hers) upholds California’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Rule (AFFH) through local technical legal assistance, enforcement litigation, and advocacy focused on robust AFFH implementation alongside and on behalf of rural low-income communities of color that are owed their right to an affordable, safe, and sustainable neighborhood.

More than half of all Californians are experiencing housing cost burdens. Of California’s regional and state communities, the San Joaquin Valley (SJV)—which is composed of majority Latino/a/x, Black, AAPI, and Indigenous rural, historic, impoverished, and farmworking communities—is disproportionately impacted by these housing cost burdens. This compounds with other issues in the community, such as inadequate housing conditions, unhealthy land use patterns, experiences of community disinvestment and displacement, and environmental burdens—like the lack of access to safe drinking water and chronic exposure to poor air quality—to disproportionately affect these low-income communities of color. Climate change, COVID-19, rapidly escalating housing costs, and eviction moratoria expirations have increased these inequities even further.

To achieve the right to a sustainable, safe, and responsive community and to undo the United States’ legacy of systemic, racist housing discrimination, we must fulfill the need for dedicated work to community lawyering and advocacy alongside rural low-income communities of color across the SJV—which is labeled as an “attorney desert” by the California State Bar.

Jasmine sees herself and her family in the residents of rural California as they fight for safe communities and for their voices to be heard. Jasmine’s commitment to justice stems from her maternal and paternal grandparents’ experiences in rural Jim Crow Alabama, Mexico, Greece, and Nevada as well as her own hardships within racist and hostile institutions. She wants to see all low-income neighborhoods and communities of color thrive in every space and place they go.

Fellowship Plans

Jasmine will collaborate with local cities and counties as they update their statutorily required housing plans regarding jurisdictions’ compliance with the AFFH rule. She will also enforce state and federal violations of AFFH, housing, environmental, land use, and civil rights laws through litigation on behalf of community group clients. Finally, Jasmine will collaborate with state agencies to ensure ongoing robust AFFH implementation, conduct trainings for the public on robust AFFH compliance, and write a policy paper on AFFH community engagement, legal work, and advocacy strategy best practices.

As a woman of color, my personal and familial experiences of racist space and place drive my passion for pursuing the right to restorative communities and the reversal of historic and ongoing racist discrimination for those most impacted in our communities.

Jasmine Robinson /
2023 Equal Justice Works Fellow

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Parisa Fatehi

Host: Public Advocates

Sponsor: Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP

Peter H. Gilbert

Host: UNC Center for Civil Rights

Sponsor: Norflet Progress Fund

Nicholas Leonard

Host: Great Lakes Environmental Law Center

Sponsor: Deere & Company, Lane & Waterman LLP, Schiff Hardin LLP

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Andrew Hanson

Host: Midwest Environmental Advocates, Inc.

Sponsor: Beldon Fund