CLASS ACTION CASES
SOUTH AFRICA APARTHEID
Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck, LLP is proud to have served as class counsel in a South Africa Apartheid class action, filed in the Southern District of New York on behalf of South African plaintiffs. The Complaint alleges that five multinational companies collaborated and acted purposefully with the South African government to commit human rights violations including apartheid, itself a crime against humanity. Other claims allege complicity in extrajudicial killings, torture, de-nationalization, and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment during the apartheid regime. The companies named in the suit are Barclays Bank PLC (Barclays), Ford Motor Company (Ford), General Motors Corporation (GM), Daimler AG (Daimler) and International Business Machines Corporation (IBM). The case is moving forward, after the court denied Defendants’ motions to dismiss in part in a 136-page order on April 8, 2009, and on September 3, 2009, the South African government withdrew its opposition to the case proceeding in the United States in the District of New York.
SAN DIEGO WELFARE APPLICANTS
Sanchez v. County of San Diego, 464 F.3d 916 (9th Cir. 2006), reh’g denied 483 F.3d 965, 966 (9th Cir. 2007). Amber Eck litigated a class action brought on behalf of welfare applicants seeking to enjoin the County’s “Project 100%” program whereby investigators from the D.A.’s office (Public Assistance Fraud Division) enter and search the home of every person applying for welfare benefits. The case was reported in the Harvard Law Review, the New York Times, and was even the subject of a “Colbert Report” feature.
Badua v. City of San Diego, 296 F.3d 701 (9th Cir. 1999). Amber Eck represented class plaintiffs in an action alleging that the City’s Long Term Disability (“LTD”) plan violated the Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”) because it provided substantially less coverage to individuals with mental disabilities, such as manic depression, than those with physical disabilities. Co-counsel Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund (“DREDF”) described it as one of the most important cases of the year, and commended the “talent, effort and commitment” of Ms. Eck and the plaintiff team.
Public Justice pursues high impact lawsuits to combat social and economic injustice, protect the Earth’s sustainability, and challenge predatory corporate conduct and government abuses.
On September 30, 2012, Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck attorneys will walk in the San Diego AIDS Walk & Run for the second consecutive year. The AIDS Walk & Run raises money to combat HIV and AIDS, and spreads awareness about the impact of the disease. It is the largest one-day HIV/AIDS fundraiser in San Diego County. For more information on the event, visit the AIDS Walk & Run information page.
Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck participated in the 7th Annual Lemon Grove Soroptimist Int’l Chili Cook-Off on Saturday Nov. 5, 2011, with proceeds to benefit the Lemon Grove Holiday Food & Toy Drive, Lemon Grove Food Bank and improve life of women and girls.
Amber is active in Girl Scouts, serving as Leader of her older daughter’s Brownie Troop #3759 and Camping Coordinator for her younger daughter’s Daisy Troop #3766 (2010-2012).
Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck lawyers Alreen, Amber, Ricky and Aaron joined in the Morning After Mess Cleanup on July 5, 2010 from 8-11a.m. at the Ocean Beach Pier.
Amber is the GATE (Gifted And Talented Education) District Advisory Committee Representative for Loma Portal Elementary School (2011-2012).
On November 13, 2010 from 8:15 am – 3 pm, Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck lawyers Alreen, Helen and Amber participated in an all-day build for San Diego Habitat for Humanity in National City featuring all women volunteers.
Think Dignity - Formerly Known as Girls Think Tank
Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck, LLP is committed to giving back to the community they live in and to the neighbors around them. Towards this goal, Helen Zeldes and Alreen Haeggquist currently sit on the Board of the Girls Think Tank a local non-profit grassroots organization of women and men providing a forum for community, collaboration, creativity, and hands-on public service. The purpose of the Girls Think Tank is to foster a culture of empowerment amongst its members and in the community by providing a vehicle for change on local issues that confront us daily.
Whether it’s homelessness, trafficking of women, gang violence, or carbon emissions, Girls Think Tank members put their heads, hearts, and hands together to provide solutions that both provide a public service for the community and a sense of pride that they are doing something about the issues that matter most to us. Check out the GTT new video – Girls Think Tank Makes a Difference in San Diego.
As members of the Girls Think Tank, Ms. Zeldes and Ms. Haeggquist annually partake in what is now known as the Girls Think Tank’s signature project – distributing Winter Survival Backpacks. These backpacks are given to displaced men, women and children living on the streets of San Diego during the coldest months of the year. Each backpack provides people living on the streets with a sleeping bag, blanket, a hat, gloves, socks, some snacks and water. Along with the backpacks, Ms. Zeldes, Ms. Haeggquist and other GTT members also collect and pass out used jackets and shoes to the men and women living on the streets.
Recently, Alreen Haeggquist was awarded with the Distinguished Alumni Award from the California Innocence Project for carrying out and promoting the spirit and ideals of the CIP through her legal work and community service. On March 7, 2011, Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck lawyers Alreen, Amber and Aaron suited up in their best garb, dressed as “Lucky Leprechauns” to battle it out at the 6th Annual CIP Dodgeball Tournament. All proceeds from the tournament went to CIP to help free the wrongfully convicted. Founded in 1999, CIP is a law school clinical program dedicated to releasing wrongfully convicted inmates and providing an outstanding education experience to students enrolled in the clinic.CIP reviews more than 2,000 claims of innocence from California inmates each year. Check out CIP’s Exoneration Stories.
Amber Eck is a volunteer for Genesis Diez in Ensenada, Mexico – a non-profit organization which serves orphans, migrant, indigenous and disabled children in Baja. Amber recently returned from a volunteer trip to Rancho Genesis in March, 2010, working on construction projects at the ranch, and serving needy local children and families.
Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck, LLP is an aspiring green office. Our goal is to become a paperless office – we use real plates and cups at our office, have a scanner instead of a copier, and are conscientious of our business’ impact on the planet. To help offset our carbon footprint, we are proud participants of the Nature Conservancy’s “Plant a Billion” campaign. We are planting trees in an endangered South American rainforest. You can find out more, or plant a tree, by visiting Plant a Billion.