Welcome to the Disability Rights Bar Association

The Disability Rights Bar Association (DRBA) was started by a group of disability counsel, law professors, legal nonprofits and advocacy groups who share a commitment to effective legal representation of individuals with disabilities.

The DRBA is an online network of attorneys who specialize in disability civil rights law.  Through the DRBA, disability rights attorneys share information, coordinate litigation and other legal representation strategies, and mentor lawyers and law students who are new to disability rights practice.  The DRBA helps lawyers and individuals with disabilities pursue better cases, make more effective arguments, and understand developments in disability rights law and practice.

The DRBA is hosted by the Burton Blatt Institute (BBI) at Syracuse University.  BBI is a research, education and advocacy organization dedicated to advancing the civic, economic and social participation of people with disabilities worldwide.

Values

Members of DRBA commonly believe that:

  • The fundamental civil rights of people with disabilities are inadequately represented in our society.
  • Litigation and other legal advocacy strategies play a highly effective and necessary role in enforcing and advancing the rights of people with disabilities.
  • Networking and collaboration among attorneys who represent people with disabilities in such litigation and other legal advocacy strategies enhances the effectiveness of the overall legal services such attorneys provide.
  • Mentoring attorneys and law students who are new to the practice of disability rights law will improve access for people with disabilities to all aspects of our society.

Objectives

The DRBA was established for the following purposes:

  • To advance and enforce the rights of people with disabilities in all spheres of life through the use of litigation and other legal advocacy strategies.
  • To support, promote and facilitate the practice of disability rights law by:
    • Disseminating information regarding disability law, advocacy and civil rights enforcement.
    • Exchanging strategies concerning disability rights cases.
    • Notifying DRBA members about developments in disability rights cases and developments in disability law.
  • To mentor law students, new practitioners and others to promote high standards in legal practition.
  • To exchange resources, briefs, forms, case law and information regarding expert witnesses.

Activities

To advance these objectives, DRBA will engage in the following activities, among others:

  • Operate a listserv for exclusive use of DRBA members.
  • Host a document bank and other resources for exclusive use of DRBA members.
  • Operate a website providing information on disability rights law and legal advocacy strategies.
  • Hold conferences on disability law, litigation and other legal advocacy strategies.
  • File amicus briefs on behalf of DRBA to support cases that enforce and promote the rights of people with disabilities.
  • Coordinate litigation and other legal representation strategies.
  • Offer educational materials on disability rights law, litigation and other legal advocacy strategies.
  • Mentor law students and lawyers who are new to disability rights law practice.