Although the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified our need to quickly adapt to rapidly changing circumstances, effective legal aid lawyering has always required a certain and constant level of adaptability. The evolving legal landscape, resultant legal needs, and the unique situations for individual clients have forced big and small changes in the day-to-day work of a legal aid lawyer. From a housing attorney to working with Medical-Legal Partnerships to becoming a disability rights attorney, Jia Min will discuss her work as an interdisciplinary legal aid lawyer and how to adapt to constant change.
Jia Min Cheng is a supervising attorney at Disability Rights California (“DRC”), the largest protection and advocacy agency in the United States. As a member of DRC’s Advocacy and Community Engagement practice group, she supervises a team of advocates and attorneys providing support to persons with disabilities primarily in the legal areas of housing and health.
Prior to DRC, Jia Min worked at Bay Area Legal Aid for eleven years. From 2011-2017, she directed a Medical-Legal Partnership (“MLP”) with the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center (“ZSFG”). Using her years of experience at ZSFG, Jia Min was instrumental in the design and launch of an MLP between Bay Area Legal Aid and the Community Health Center Network in Alameda County. This successful partnership focused on helping to stabilize the lives of Medicaid high-utilizer patients by working closely with their community health workers to address potential legal issues upstream. Although a generalist with a zeal for wraparound legal services, Jia Min’s primary passion is in housing law. Jia Min’s housing experience includes extensive volunteer work with the National Housing Law Project and the San Francisco Justice & Diversity Center’s Housing Negotiation Project. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Davis and her Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from the University of Oregon School of Law.
The Wasserstein Public Interest Fellows Program brings outstanding public interest attorneys to Harvard Law School to counsel students about public service. The program recognizes exemplary lawyers who have distinguished themselves in public interest work and who can advise students who are considering similar career paths. All students are welcome and encouraged to learn more and meet one on one with our Wasserstein Fellows.
Take-away lunch will be provided at the end of the program.
RSVP below to attend.
If you or an event participant requires disability-related accommodations, please contact HLS Accessibility Services at email@example.com two weeks in advance of the event.