Helping the homeless inspires lawyer to launch New Jersey advocacy group. What is your passion in the pursuit of practicing law?

Posted on 07-21-2014 by
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Jeffrey J. Wild – Attorney, partner and advocate for the homeless.

Inspired by his father’s experience in the Great Depression, Mr. Wild’s first encounter with homelessness came during his first year as a lawyer at Paul, Weiss, when he worked on the litigation that ultimately created the right to shelter in New York.

“I remember the contrast between sitting in a nice office in one of the most prestigious law firms in the world and then walking out into the street and seeing the homeless outside the building,” as quoted in a featured profile post published NJ SPOTLIGHT.

With an inspired goal to help those in need, Mr. Wild to begin visiting Tent City in Lakewood, New Jersey, with a group from his synagogue bringing “survival supplies” to the camp a few times a year; however, Mr. Wild decided to go beyond the norm arranging for Legal Services of New Jersey (the nonprofit group that provides legal aid to low-income residents) to meet with homeless at a local church so that they could get government benefits.”

And, Wild’s passion to abolish homelessness doesn’t end there. Representing the residents of Tent City, Mr. Wild won an injunction against the demolition of the camp in 2012 and later won a consent decree guaranteeing a year of housing to residents of the camp in exchange for the camp being closed. The closure is in process, and currently the remaining residents are protesting its closure.

While Mr. Wilde doesn’t support tent cities, and believes they are an “abomination” he does “believe in the right to stay somewhere until they have another option.”

What are the passions that inspire you to practice law? Tell us your story.

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