CrowdJustice Brings Crowdfunding for Legal Costs to the U.S.

May 31, 2017 - 2 minutes read

Democracy genuinely seems in peril right now in the tumultuous early days of the Trump era. Fortunately, millions of Americans are banding together to reassert the power of the people. It’s likely that many members of the mobile app development community have joined in the effort by signing petitions, calling lawmakers, donating money, or protesting in the street. A growing number of app developers and startups are contributing to the struggle by creating services that seek to strengthen our democracy.

CrowdJustice is one such service. The startup, originally based out of London, is essentially a Kickstarter for covering legal costs, with an emphasis on cases of social significance. London-based app developers may remember CrowdJustice’s role in backing the “People’s Challenge” to Brexit. Here in America, the platform was used to raise $36,600 to fund the Legal Aid Justice Center’s case against Trump’s immigration ban. It is committed to providing the little guy with legal access in a time when power is running amok.

Julia Salasky, the company’s founder and a former U.N. lawyer, can tell which way the wind is blowing, which is why she has brought CrowdJustice to the U.S. New York City app developers can now count Salasky among their neighbors. “It’s never been a more important time to ensure that the law can be used by anyone, large or small, to defend and protect rights, or hold the government to account,” Salasky says. CrowdJustice has raised $2 million in venture capital for its American expansion. The startup is commemorating its successful round of seed funding with a new campaign literally pitting pirates versus a corporation.

Pirate Joe’s is a Canadian startup going toe-to-toe with the popular grocery chain Trader Joe’s. The Canadian’s company’s business model is to purchase coveted Trader Joe’s products in bulk and sell them in Vancouver at a marked-up price. Unsurprisingly, Trader Joe’s wants Pirate Joe’s shut down. This may not strike NYC app developers as a case with the same kind of import as striking down the immigration ban, but it shows CrowdJustice’s commitment to helping underdogs out of a tight spot.

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