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Domestic Violence Law Project at VIBS (DVLP)

The Domestic Violence Law Project (DVLP) at VIBS exists to provide quality legal representation to our clients, victims of violence. For survivors of violence, having an attorney can increase the likelihood of obtaining a civil order of protection from 32 percent to 86 percent. These court orders, in turn, can reduce the occurrence of violence and help survivors feel safer and more empowered in their relationships and in their lives. DVLP attorneys can also assist with other legal issues, such as child custody, divorce, housing, and government benefits, which may be holding survivors back from leaving abusive relationships.

The Cohalan Court Complex in Central Islip

Victims of violence are frequently not in a position to hire their own attorneys for financial, safety or other reasons. Victims in low-income households experience five times the rate of domestic abuse of victims in higher-income households. With VIBS’ team of litigators and support staff, clients who are in financial need are afforded the invaluable opportunity to pursue justice in a court of law at no charge. VIBS staff attorneys work in the Suffolk County Family, District and Supreme Courts. Please contact the Domestic Violence Law Project for more information or to see if you qualify.


 

Meet the Team

 

Ali N. Shusterman-Goldsmith, Staff Attorney

Mrs. Goldsmith earned her JD from Pace University School of Law in 2002. During her time at Pace, Mrs. Goldsmith worked under a student practice order for the New York County District Attorney’s Office Prosecution of Domestic Violence Program. There she prosecuted domestic violence cases and was given a wide range of training in domestic violence and victimless prosecutions. In 2002, Mrs. Goldsmith also worked for the Pace Women’s Justice Center, a leading agency in education and advocacy for victims of domestic violence. Upon graduation, Mrs. Goldsmith was admitted to the Bar for the State of New York and continued her legal career as a trial attorney at the Nassau County Legal Aid Society. Mrs. Goldsmith’s litigation experience spans over fifteen years. Mrs. Goldsmith is a zealous counselor for victims and utilizes her criminal experience in concert with her experience as a hearing examiner, and domestic violence knowledge to advise and advocate for VIBS clients.

Ali says, “I have chosen to work at VIBS because it is a great opportunity to help victims of violence which has been a cause to which I have dedicated my entire adult life.”

 

Lisa A. Harvey, Staff Attorney

Lisa A. Harvey is a staff attorney at VIBS.  Her primary area of practice is Family Law including child and sexual abuse, elder abuse and matrimonial.  She earned her Juris Doctor degree from Western Michigan University in 2015 where she graduated with honors, her MBA from Dowling College in 2009, and her BS from Northern Caribbean University in 2003. Ms. Harvey is admitted to the bar in the State of New York and is a member of the American Bar Association and the New York State Bar Association. Ms. Harvey is a fearless litigator who advocates on behalf of VIBS clients daily.

Lisa says, “Through VIBS, [clients] are able to confront their abusers by means of the Domestic Violence Law Project and I am proud to be a part of such a great movement – the fight to end domestic violence, rape and sexual abuse.”

 

Rosemary Pique, Legal Assistant

Rosemary Pique holds a Bachelor’s and a Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice from St. John’s University. She has worked at the Office of Adult and Continuing Education for the NYC Department of Education as an ESL teacher prior to deciding to follow her true passion. This drive to do more motivated her to venture into the legal field where she aspires to become a lawyer and grow professionally in the legal field. Rosemary is an essential part of the DVLP team and assists clients and the legal staff to provide the exceptional standard of care to which VIBS’ DVLP clients have come to expect.

Rosemary says, “My motivation is helping others by making a difference and being a voice in the lives of those who are afraid to speak up or stand up for themselves. That is what we are able to do at VIBS.”