National Lawyers Guild Adopts Resolution Supporting Prison Abolition
By: National Lawyers Guild
Following the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) Law for the People Convention in October, NLG membership adopted a resolution calling for the dismantling and abolition of all prisons and of all aspects of systems and institutions that support, condone, create, fill, or protect prisons. The U.S. currently holds the world’s largest prison population at a cost of $80 billion per year, and spends six times more on prisons than education. “Calling for the abolition of this profit-motivated system that is designed to maintain racial and economic inequality while relying on individualized punishment as a primary response to social problems falls directly within our mission of protecting human rights over property interests,” said Sharlyn Grace, NLG Co-Executive Vice President.
Furthermore, the resolution identifies the damaging injustices perpetuated by the current prison system, including racism, classism, ableism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, ageism, labor abuse, marginalization of non-Christians, and criminalization of political dissent. Prisons legitimize capitalism and feed corporate wealth directly at the expense of poor communities, and especially urban communities of color.
New! Gendering Documentation: A Manual for and About Women Human Rights Defenders
By: Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition | Logo credit: Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition
To mark International Women Human Rights Defender Day (29 November) and International Human Rights Day (10 December), the Women Human Rights Defenders International Coalition is introducing its new publication, “Gendering Documentation: A Manual For and About Women Human Rights Defenders”. The manual is now available for download.
Judge Rules Yakima-Area Hospitals Violated Charity Care Law and Breached Contracts with Indigent Patients
By: Columbia Legal Services
Last week, a Yakima County Superior Court judge ruled in favor of a class of indigent patients against the parent company of Yakima Regional Medical Center (YRMC) and Toppenish Community Hospital. Judge Susan L. Hahn found that the hospitals had a practice of violating the Washington Charity Care Act by failing to screen patients for financial need before demanding payments from patients-many times in the form of up-front deposits as a condition of receiving care. She also found that this practice violated the hospital’s contract with its patients because it caused patients to pay money they did not owe under Washington law.
“All Hospitals have to provide their fair share of charity care, under Washington law,” said Eleanor Hamburger, of Sirianni Youtz Spoonemore Hamburger and one of the attorneys for the class. “By making their obligation to provide charity care a well-kept secret, the hospitals required some patients to pay more than legally allowed for treatment, forced others to go without the medical care they needed, and foisted its responsibility for providing charity care on its closest competitor. Now the Court has concluded that this practice is illegal and a breach of contract.”
2016 Law Student Legal Writing Competition, Due March 4th
The Forum on Affordable Housing and Community Development Law is now accepting writing submission for the 2016 Law Student Writing Competition.
Eligibility: Open to all students currently enrolled in an ABA Accredited Law School who are members of the Forum on Affordable Housing and Community Development Law
Topic: Papers should address any legal issue regarding affordable housing and/or community development law.
Submission Requirements: Entries must be original, unpublished work. Articles should be between 25-50 double-spaced pages and should include footnotes in Bluebook format. There is no entry form of any kind. Articles should be submitted in Word format. All author-identifying information should be removed from the article. A separate title page should be attached and must contain the articles title, the students name, and the students contact information including street address, phone number(s), and email address.
Award: Submissions will be blindly evaluated by a committee of Forum members. A single winning paper, as judged by the selection committee, will be awarded a prize of $1,000 and a trip to attend the Forums Annual Conference, May 25-27, 2016, in Washington, D.C. (airfare and lodging included)*. The winner is responsible for any taxes on Fair Market Value (FMV) of full award, including travel, registration and lodging. Winner will be required to submit a completed 1099 as a condition of receiving award. The decision of the judges is final.
The winning essay may be published in the Journal of Affordable Housing and Community Development Law. If selected for publication, winner will be required to sign a standard publication agreement giving the ABA the right of first publication.
Date: All entries must be postmarked or emailed by March 4, 2016.
Send entries to the Journal’s Editor-in-Chief:
Community Economic Development Program
Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, Inc.
4232 Forest Park Ave. | St. Louis, MO 63108
Please contact Dawn R. Holiday at firstname.lastname@example.org , if you have any questions.
*Coach airfare, 21-day advance purchase and lodging at the conference hotel for 2 nights.