Luna Droubi is a partner and experienced litigator with a diverse practice. She represents individuals, families, and classes of individuals alleging employment discrimination, wrongful conviction, wrongful death, and government misconduct. She also advises not-for-profit organizations with respect to their formation, operations, management, governance, and employment issues. She has also supported not-for-profit organization clients through various complaint investigations and other crises.
Luna has investigated and litigated a number of wrongful death cases, including the deaths of Samuel Harrell, David Felix, Sandy Guardiola, and Robert Chambers. Luna, together with Partner Jonathan Moore, represented the Estate of Eric Garner, who was killed in a chokehold and whose death led to international outrage and calls for change.
Luna has also appeared as class counsel in civil rights actions challenging unconstitutional policing and employment practices, including the ground-breaking “Stop and Frisk” litigation. In 2016, she filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of NYPD officers seeking an accommodation to wear their beards pursuant to their religious beliefs. She successfully secured a temporary restraining order against the NYPD on behalf of an officer who was placed on unpaid leave for refusing to shave his beard because of his Muslim faith, leading the NYPD to change its policy regarding religious accommodations.
Luna also has extensive experience in employment matters. In 2017, she obtained a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against the FDNY on behalf of a Muslim radio dispatcher who refused to shave his beard because of his faith. In 2021, she successfully negotiated a settlement with the Nashville Police Department to allow employees to wear religious head coverings. She frequently handles negotiations of employment, severance, and separation agreements.
Prior to joining BLH, Luna clerked for the Honorable Sterling Johnson Jr. in the Eastern District of New York. During law school, Luna was Editor-in-Chief of the New York Law School Law Review and worked at the United Nations, Manhattan Legal Services, and the Legal Aid Society.
Arab American Bar Association & Fund
Muslim Bar Association of New York
National Employment Lawyers Association
National Lawyers Guild
National Police Accountability Project
New York Civil Liberties Union, Board Member
New York County Lawyers' Association
2024 Best Lawyers in America, Employment Law-Individual
2017–2023 SuperLawyers Top Rated Civil Rights Attorney
2017–2022 New York Metro Rising Stars in Civil Rights
2017 Associate Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
2011 Graduation Award for Excellence in the Field of Human Rights
2010–2011 Editor-in-Chief, New York Law School Law Review
Henry Dlugacz, Luna Droubi, and Mehgan Gallagher, Custodial Suicide and Class Action Remedies: Current Obstacles and Future Directions, Behav. Sci. & L. (2019)
Henry Dlugacz & Luna Droubi,The Reach and Limitation of the ADA and its Integration Mandate: Potential Implications for the Successful Reentry of Individuals with Mental Disabilities in a Correctional Population, 35 Behav. Sci. & L. 135 (2017).
Note: The Constitutionality of the Niqab Ban in Egypt: A Symbol of the Struggle for Egypt’s Legal Identity, 56 N.Y.L. Sch. L. Rev. 687 (2011–2012).
Comment: People v. Guardino, 55 N.Y.L. Sch. L. Rev. 1157 (2010–2011) (discussing whether an individual can rely on numerical evidence of a high juror dismissal rate to demonstrate a prima facie case of jury discrimination in New York).
Obtained class certification, summary judgement, and injunctive relief on behalf of Corrections Officers seeking to wear their beards due to their sincerely held religious beliefs. Sughrim v. New York, No. 19-cv-7977 (RA) (SDA), 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 156519 (S.D.N.Y. Sep. 5, 2023).
Defeated motions to dismiss, and obtained sanctions against the State of New York, in the wrongful death case of Sandy Guardiola, who was shot and killed in her bed after a retaliatory wellness check by colleagues at the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision. Ocasio v. City of Canandaigua et al., 513 F. Supp. 3d 310 (W.D.N.Y. 2021); Ocasio v. City of Canandaigua et al., 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 118111 (W.D.N.Y. July 10, 2023).
Defeated summary judgment in a disability discrimination case on behalf of a physician terminated from Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Piligian v. Icahn Sch. of Med. at Mount Sinai, No. 1:17-CV-01975 (ALC), 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 178058, at *2 (S.D.N.Y. Sep. 28, 2020).
Defeated motions to dismiss and summary judgment in the wrongful death case of David Felix, who was shot and killed by two NYPD detectives on April 21, 2015. The Court denied summary judgment, finding that a question of fact existing given the Detectives' use of subterfuge to enter the apartment building where they ultimately shot and killed Mr. Felix. The Court also twice found that Plaintiffs successfully asserted a claim for failure to train and supervise officers on how to properly treat emotionally disturbed persons by plausibly supporting the existence of a training deficiency and the city’s awareness of same. Felix v. City of N.Y., 344 F. Supp. 3d 644 (S.D.N.Y. 2018); Felix v. City of N.Y., 408 F. Supp. 3d 304 (S.D.N.Y. 2019); Felix v. City of N.Y., No. 16-cv-5845 (AJN), 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189223 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 13, 2020).
$2.25 million jury verdict finding Rockefeller University discriminated against Iranian scientist Dr. Effat Emamian based on her race and national origin. Emamian v. Rockefeller University, No. 07-cv-3919 (DAB) (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 28, 2018), remitted verdict aff'd, Nos. 19-127, 19-168, 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 26261, at *26 (2d Cir. Aug. 19, 2020)
Obtained a Preliminary Injunction in a religious discrimination lawsuit against the FDNY. Lewis v. City of New York, No. 17-cv-6114 (GHW)(HBP) (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 24, 2017).
Obtained a Temporary Restraining Order in a putative class action against the NYPD challenging the NYPD's policy on religious accommodation and the right to wear a beard for religious purposes. Syed v. City of New York et al., No. 16-cv-4789 (S.D.N.Y. 2016).
Filed a wrongful death lawsuit after investigating the death of Samuel Harrell, a mentally disabled inmate at Fishkill Correctional Facility who was beaten to death by a group of guards known as the "Beat Up Squad." Estate of Harrell v. DOCCS et al., No. 15-cv-7065 (S.D.N.Y. 2016).
$169,750 settlement on behalf on a client who was excessively pepper-sprayed by NYPD officers. Luckey v. City of New York et al., No. 14-cv-01571 (E.D.N.Y. Nov. 23, 2016).
New York Law School
(J.D. 2011, cum laude),
Editor-in-Chief, New York Law
School Law Review
New York University
(B.A. 2006, cum laude)
Civil Rights & Discrimination
International Human Rights
Non-Profit Formation and Maintenance
Second Circuit Court of Appeals
Third Circuit Court of Appeals
United States District Court, Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of New York
United States District Court for the District of New Jersey