IN THE FACE OF A POTENTIAL STRIKE CAMBA DECREASES SERVICES TO CLIENTS TO ITS OWN MONETARY BENEFIT

**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE**

APRIL 2, 2019

Contact: Alexi Shalom, 347-417-1715, ashalom@alaa.org

BROOKLYN, NY –

Management has advised several of our members in recent days to give advice only to potential clients who have scheduled appointments for intake at our Brooklyn offices and deny them full representation. Scheduling appointments with potential clients who management has no intention of actually offering substantive legal services is unacceptable and must end now.

Management has advised several of our members in recent days to give advice only to potential clients who have scheduled appointments for intake at our Brooklyn offices and deny them full representation. Scheduling appointments with potential clients who management has no intention of actually offering substantive legal services is unacceptable and must end now.

When staff first formed a union last year, both staff and management agreed both sides should proceed in a client-oriented approach to make sure our neighbors seeking assistance with housing, immigration, and consumer issues would continue to receive the best possible service as bargaining moved forward. It is now clear to staff that management has abandoned the promise to the community and is blatantly choosing a path to its own favor. A path that is detrimental to the well-being of those in the community it claims to religiously serve.

By asking our members to proceed with these intake appointments but provide advice only, it is obvious management wants to receive credit under its contracts for meeting with as many potential clients as possible despite having no intention of actually taking on any of these potential clients for full representation.  This reprehensible policy is disrespectful to potential clients and staff. Clients often wait up to four hours in CAMBA’s undignified and inadequate waiting rooms to meet with an attorney. Our neighbors take off work, school, pay for childcare, and may spend hours waiting for Access-a-Ride.

It is unconscionable to expect potential clients to make this kind of sacrifice when management has no intention of actually offering full representation to them. Additionally, staff is losing a full day each week it could dedicate to serve current clients better.

We are calling on management to honor its promise to treat our neighbors with respect and cease scheduling out of court intake solely for CAMBA’s own monetary advantage. Our neighbors’ cases must be properly examined and not simply another ploy for CAMBA to rake in benefits it only shares with the top executives.  CAMBA needs to act in good faith to the community, as well as at the bargaining table.