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Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at NYU School of Law

The Bernstein Institute promotes cutting-edge research, advocacy and education on human rights issues around the world, with priority accorded to closed and closing societies.

Presence in: United States
Focus: Other

Honoring and extending the legacy of Robert L. Bernstein, the Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at NYU School of Law promotes cutting-edge research, advocacy and education on human rights issues around the world, with priority accorded to closed and closing societies. The Institute embraces a holistic approach to the advancement of human rights, deepening engagement and action by key stakeholders in the pursuit of human rights and social justice: law students, young lawyers, advocacy organizations, judges, scholars, interdisciplinary allies and affected communities.

People Associated With This Organization

Antonio Gutierrez

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human... (Unverified)
Joined July 2020
Gutierrez oversees Strategic Development & Operations for OCAD by addressing structural needs and facilitating the organization’s sustainable growth. They became involved with the organization as part of the Immigrant Youth Justice League (IYJL). Gutierrez has over 5 years of non-profit administration development, and is also a co-founder of the Albany Park Defense Network and the Autonomous Tenants Union.

Bryan Brown

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human...
Joined August 2017
Bryan is the Programs Manager for the Robert L. Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at NYU School of Law. He also works in NYU Law's Public Interest Law Center where he supports the Root-Tilden-Kern Scholarship. Previously Bryan worked at the Center for Pastoral Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS), assisting students and managing programs and events. Prior to JTS, Bryan served two years in the AmeriCorps program City Year, tutoring and organizing school beautification projects in underserved neighborhoods in Los Angeles. Bryan received his BA from UC Santa Cruz and is currently pursuing an MPA at NYU Wagner.

Deekshitha Ganesan

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human... (Unverified)
Joined March 2021
Interests: Criminal Justice, Women's Rights
I am a lawyer from India, currently pursuing an LLM at NYU Law. I have a background in human rights lawyering in India, broadly on equality and non-discrimination and criminal justice. I am currently working with the Bernstein Institute that is affiliated to the NYU Law on the Jailhouse Lawyering Initiative. I am interested in exploring legal empowerment strategies, especially in relation to criminal justice where there are challenges like access and complicated issues to confront, like working in conjunction with the carceral state. I hope to learn from similar efforts across the world in the criminal justice space and otherwise.

Emese Ilyes

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human... (Unverified)
Joined July 2022
Interests: Citizenship & Identification, Community / Customary Land Rights, Community Organizing, Community Paralegals, Criminal Justice, Disability Rights, Education, Environmental Justice, Ethnic / Religious Minorities' Rights, Family, Indigenous Peoples' Rights, LGBTQI+ Rights, Peace-building & Transitional Justice, Policy Advocacy, Refugees & Migrant Rights, Right to Information, Women's Rights
My journey to legal empowerment began long before I even took my first breath. I was born to a radical mother (who I called édi) who found ways to survive and cultivate joy amidst a tremendous amount of violence in communist Romania. As a very little person, because of my édi, I began to name and think about persecution and poverty and injustice as the dictator starved our community and I began to observe the ways that people resist and love, despite it all. This learning continued in the United States where my family arrived as refugees when I was almost ten years old. In the US, I witnessed the cost of structural and interpersonal injustices on the souls of those I loved and could see how the unjust systems seep into the bones of those that are pushed to the margins yet are forced to labor to tend to all. My trajectory as a participatory action researcher, educator, and activist is rooted in these histories that span across oceans. As a critical social psychologist, I have been asking questions about what it means to refuse dominant narratives and what conditions allow communities to dream up more ethical futures. I had the honor of pursuing these questions in collaboration with individuals labeled as intellectually disabled within a sheltered workshop on the West Coast of the US. I had the gift of pursuing these questions with undergraduate students that the white-supremacist hierarchical structure of the university system was not built for. I am deeply committed to participating in movements that invite everyone to build ethical, just futures, to generate knowledge that reflects who we are and reflects the world we would like to breathe into being.

Meg Satterthwaite

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human...
Joined November 2017
Interests: Community / Customary Land Rights, Environmental Justice, Gender-based violence, Governance, Accountability & Transparency, Health, Housing Rights & Informal Settlements, Women's Rights
Meg Satterthwaite is a Professor of Clinical Law, Faculty Director of the Robert and Helen Bernstein Institute for Human Rights, and Co-Director of the Center for Human Rights and the Global Justice at New York University School of Law. Her research interests include legal empowerment, economic and social rights, methodological innovation in human rights, and the wellbeing of human rights advocates. Before joining the academy, she worked for a number of human rights organizations, including Amnesty International, Human Rights First, and the Commission Nationale de Verité et de Justice in Haiti. As Director of the Global Justice Clinic, she partners with grassroots organizations and movements to prevent, challenge, and redress rights violations in situations of global inequality. Meg has worked as a consultant to numerous UN agencies and special rapporteurs and has served on the boards of several human rights organizations.

Contributed Resources:

Sukti Dhital

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human...
Joined October 2017
Interests: Health, Housing Rights & Informal Settlements, Labor & Employment, Right to Information, Women's Rights
Sukti Dhital is a human rights lawyer and the Executive Director of the Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at NYU School of Law, a law center dedicated to advancing legal empowerment through participatory research, education, and advocacy. She also serves as a Supervising Attorney with the Global Justice Clinic at NYU Law, where she oversees legal empowerment projects spanning jailhouse lawyers and immigrant rights. Previously, Sukti was the Executive Director and Co-Founder of Nazdeek, a legal empowerment organization committed to bringing access to justice closer to marginalized communities in India. At Nazdeek, Sukti worked closely with affected community members and social movements to advance labor, food, health, and housing rights through a community-driven approach, with a focus on indigenous and Dalit women.

Prior to Nazdeek, Sukti was the Director of the Reproductive Rights Unit at the Human Rights Law Network, India and assisted in securing landmark social and economic rights judgments including Laxmi Mandal v. Deen Dayal Harinagar Hospital & ORS, W.P.(C) 8853/2008, the first decision in the world to recognize maternal mortality as a human rights violation and to award constitutional damages. She has also worked at the American Civil Liberties Union’s Reproductive Freedom Project and as an appellate litigation associate at the firm of Bingham McCutchen LLP. Sukti received her BA from the University of Michigan and her JD from Northeastern University School of Law. She is a frequent speaker at institutions and conferences concerning issues of social and economic rights, gender equality, clinical legal education and legal empowerment.

Contributed Resources:

Tyler Walton

United States  
Robert L Bernstein Institute for Human...
Joined February 2021
Interests: Other
I am the Tuttleman Legal Empowerment Fellow at the Bernstein Institute for Human Rights at NYU Law School. I work closely with the Institute's executive director, Sukti Dhital, on emerging applications of legal empowerment methodologies in the United States. Currently most of my work is in the immigration field and working with the Jailhouse House Lawyer Initiative, launched by Jhody Polk.

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