A Letter from the Founder and Executive Director, Eve Schatz, Esq.
Welcome to the Berkshire Center for Justice, Inc., a nonprofit, charitable, public interest organization founded in 2006. It was important to me to design a program that was user friendly and never turned anyone away. I believe that the foundation of a well functioning service provider will give the people what they want when they need it.
It would not surprise those who know me that I founded an organization whose mission is to support social change and justice. My education, professional and cultural experiences led me to the clear understanding that legal, social and community issues layer one upon the other weaving together a reality landscape as we know it-culture, lifestyle, opportunity, and spirit.
Living in America and traveling throughout the world I have observed how citizens and societies act upon one another- whether by laws and behaviors of discrimination and indifference or generosity and inclusion. I know which side I am on, and my heart is determined to make a positive impact through example. Personal experiences that influenced my awareness of justice include: 1960’s turned 16 in the old city of Jerusalem; 1970’s co-founded a multicultural music school in Cambridge, Massachusetts; 1980’s-participated in a medical team deep in the bush of West Africa and recorded music in the King’s Chamber in Cheop’s pyramid at Giza, Egypt; 1990’s worked on legislation that was signed into law in support of patients’ rights in Florida and brought a local polluter into compliance with Massachusetts DEP regulations; 2011 helped persuade two local businesses to treat all of its members with equanimity.
While putting together a post secondary plan for a young man with learning disabilities at Housatonic Valley Regional High School, it was revealed that his elderly father was dying. Father needed legal assistance to protect his son from negative consequences of his imminent death. I referred him to an attorney. My involvement with the family helped stabilize the boy’s future after dad died.
It would be a few years before I would attend law school, but my vision was clear- to bridge and address community and legal issues together would both profoundly benefit clients and strengthen community in Berkshire County and beyond.
Social service organizations don’t address legal issues. Lawyers don’t address client social service needs. We do both. Our unique program design is effective in a world becoming more complex and connected. I specifically designed this program to be reproduce-able in locations where there exists a need to fill the gap for those in need of services but can’t afford access to legal counsel.
Thank you for visiting. Every day we help change the world a little bit. You can help, too, by donating, joining our Board and volunteering. Give us a call!
Eve Schatz, Esq.