The Earl Carl Institute for Legal and Social Policy, Inc. at the Thurgood Marshall School of Law seeks to identify, address, and offer solutions to issues that affect traditionally urban and disenfranchised communities. The Institute was established in 1992 by Professor Marcia Johnson and is a nonprofit corporation exempt from taxation under §501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Institute is committed to the belief that social change can occur through a variety of educational and advocacy activities, client education, publications, and direct legal representation.
The Earl Carl Institute for Legal & Social Policy, Inc. (ECI) was initially designed to serve as a provider of resources for Thurgood Marshall students to enhance their research and writing skills. Over the past 20 years the Institute’s programs have grown significantly and now also include training in legal advocacy, leadership, office management, and problem solving.
The Institute generally addresses issues that involve both legal and social policy, through interdisciplinary work, with special emphasis on areas that have a disproportionate impact on minority and underserved communities. The projects typically have one of three outcomes: (1) student development, (2) public policy initiatives, and (3) community education. Currently, the Institute focuses its efforts on issues involving (1) the criminal justice system, (2) family, (3) housing and (4) education.
The Institute annually publishes student and academic article in its ECI Interdisciplinary Journal For Legal And Social Policy. It also publishes student articles on the web and in other journals. Recent research and writing projects have included:
The Institute also operates three clinical programs:
The institute provides several continuing legal education and community education programs each year. Annual programs typically involve (1) criminal indigent defense (2) juvenile justice and (3) domestic violence.