Join the Conversation with Award-Winning Honduran Activists on Indigenous Environmental Activism!

November 6: CLE on Transgender Health: Making Access to Care a Beauty

QLaw Logo

Date: Friday, Nov. 6, 2015
Time: 12:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Location: K&L Gates (925 Fourth Ave, Suite 2900, Seattle)
CLE credits: 4.0 General Credits

Advocates have made great progress in ending discriminatory exclusions against transgender people in health plans issued in Washington State. But many transgender people continue to be denied coverage for medically necessary care by their health insurers and face difficulties navigating the process for appealing denials of coverage.  Please join the QLaw Foundation and community partners for training to learn how to assist transgender clients who are denied coverage by their health insurers. The training is open to attorneys, law students, health care providers, and other advocates who work with transgender clients.

Cost: 

  • Free for QLaw Foundation LGBTQ volunteer attorneys, as well as for attorneys, health care providers, and other advocates who agree to be on call to assist at least one transgender client with a health insurance issue before the end of 2016.
  • $40 for attorneys who are unable to commit to volunteering

To register, click here.

Questions? Contact transhealth@qlawfoundation.org.

November 10: Part Two of Social Justice Tuesday Presentations – Resistance to Immigration Detention: From the Local to the National

SJT

Date: Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2015
Time: 12:30 – 1:20 PM
Location: William H. Gates Hall, RM 127 unless otherwise noted

In the absence of effective immigration reform, the federal government’s use of detention as an immigration enforcement strategy has increased exponentially.  To keep up with the national quota that requires Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to maintain no less than 34,000 immigration detention beds at all times, immigrants, including lawful permanent residents and asylum seekers, are detained for months and sometimes years. Conditions of confinement in immigration detention facilities are deplorable and yet there are no enforceable regulations that govern management of the detention facilities.  Without access to affordable legal services, conditions of confinement often go unaddressed and immigrant detainees remain particularly vulnerable.  While detained individuals and their families suffer greatly, the private prison industry that contracts with the government to oversee immigration detention facilities are using “guaranteed minimum” contract provisions to maintain profits whether the beds are filled or not.  This contract scheme safeguards profits for private companies while incentivizing the incarceration of immigrants. Problematic partnerships between ICE and local law enforcement only exacerbate the problem, leading to the transfer of immigrants from jails and prisons to immigration detention centers.

Our two-part Social Justice Tuesday Presentations will address the proliferation of immigration detention and showcase stories and strategies of resistance and defiance both locally and nationally.

If you would like lunch please RSVP via Symplicity or gatespsl@uw.edu RSVP by 12:00 pm Monday, November 9.

November 16: Increasing Diversity in Legal Leadership: A Managing Partner’s Perspective

UW Law

Date: Monday, Nov. 16, 2015
Time: 12:30 PM – 1:20 PM
Location: William H. Gates Hall RM 217

Ben Wilson is the Managing Principal at Beveridge & Diamond, P.C., a Washington, DC-based law firm of 100 attorneys specializing in environmental law.   Mr. Wilson.  A native of Jackson, Mississippi, and a graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Law, Mr. Wilson has been with Beveridge & Diamond since 1986.  He has represented the environmental interests of major consumer product corporations, municipal government agencies in major cities, and financial bodies, as well negotiated player contracts on behalf of professional athletes.

Mr. Wilson received the Spirit of Excellence Award in 2014 from the American Bar Association (ABA) Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Profession, the Commission’s highest honor. Earlier in 2013, Mr. Wilson received the ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources’ Dedication to Diversity and Justice Award.

Mr. Wilson will visit with students to talk about his experience as a managing partner at a law firm, and to discuss the skills and strategies he advocates widely to increase diversity and promote inclusion at the management levels of legal practice.

Space is limited.  RSVP accepted via Symplicity on a first-come, first-served basis.

November 16: Indigenous Environmental Activism in Central America – A Conversation with Award-Winning Activists Miriam Miranda & Berta Caceres

Honduran Activists Event Poster

Date: Monday, Nov. 16, 2015
Time: 3:30 PM
Location: Thomson Hall 317

Two globally-renowned environmental justice activists will discuss their strategies and struggles to protect the land and natural resources of indigenous peoples in Honduras.  Berta Caceres, winner of the 2015 Goldman Prize, will share how she has rallied the indigenous Lenca people and waged a grassroots campaign that successfully pressured the world’s largest dam builder to pull out of the Agua Zarca Dam.  Miriam Miranda, winner of the 2015 Food Sovereignty Prize, will discuss a landmark legal case that brought Afro-indigenous Garifuna communities to defend their natural resources and land rights against corporate-led development projects.

For more information about the speakers, click here.

December 8: Free Screening with the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project of Underwater Dreams

NWIRP Logo

Date: Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015
Time: 6:00 PM
Location: Central Library of the Seattle Public Library

Join NWIRP at the Central Library of the Seattle Public Library on Tuesday, December 8th at 6pm for a free screening of Underwater Dreams, a new documentary by award-winning filmmaker Mary Mazzio and narrated by Michael Peña. Underwater Dreams tells the story of four teenage boys, the sons of Mexican immigrants, who beat MIT in an underwater robotics competition.

For more information about the film, click here.

Upcoming Events on the Syrian War, Mass Incarceration, Holocaust Remembrance, and Health & the Environment

April 28: Global Mondays – Spotlight on the Syrian Civil War

Syrian Flag

Photo courtesy of StockVault and Nicolas Raymond

Monday, Apr. 28, 2014
12:30 PM – 1:20 PM

“Prospects for accountability in the Syrian Civil War”
Frederick Michael Lorenz JD, LLM, Adjunct Senior Lecturer, UW School of Law 

Hosted by the International Law Society and the Center for Human Rights and Justice 

Frederick Lorenz served in the US Marine Corps for twenty-seven years as a judge advocate, including a tour as an infantry company commander. In 1992 he joined the First Marine Expeditionary Force and was the senior legal advisor for the United Nations authorized military intervention in Somalia, and returned there as senior legal advisor for the UN evacuation in 1995. In 1996 he served in Bosnia as a legal advisor for the NATO implementation force, and went on to teach Political Science at the National Defense University. After his retirement from the Marine Corps as a colonel in 1998 he spent a year as a Fulbright Senior Scholar in St Petersburg, Russia, teaching courses in international law, environmental law and US foreign policy. In 2000 he served as a United Nations legal affairs officer in Kosovo, working in the UN Civil Administration. He is currently a Senior Lecturer at the Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington and an Adjunct Senior Lecturer at the UW School of Law. He is a Senior Peace Fellow for the Public International Law and Policy Group, with missions in the Republic of Georgia and Armenia in 2006 and 2007, and three US State Department sponsored trips to Somaliland in between 2008 and 2010.

April 29: Social Justice Tuesday- Radical Lawyering Panel

Tuesday, April 29, 12:30-1:20pm in Room 133

The UW National Lawyers Guild Student Chapter is hosting a panel of radical lawyers to share their experiences as lawyers for the people! Whether you are interested in exploring new ways to engage with justice issues as a member of the legal community, curious to hear stories from local leaders and activists, or simply need a reminder that your JD can enable you to be a force for good in the world, come join us and hear our speakers.

Speaker Bios:

Jenn Kaplan is the current vice president of the Seattle chapter of the National Lawyers Guild and an attorney at The Law Office of Gilbert Levy, a criminal defense and civil rights firm in Seattle. In addition to practicing general criminal defense, Jenn maintains a docket of political cases, representing anarchist, animal rights, Occupy Seattle, and other progressive activists in various capacities. Jenn is a graduate of New York University and the University of Washington School of Law.

Devin Theriot-Orr is a 2003 graduate of UW Law where he was a member of the immigration and appellate advocacy clinics. He is presently a senior attorney at Gibbs Houston Pauw, where he represents noncitizens in deportation proceedings, visa petition proceedings, and complex, federal litigation, including class actions. Devin is also a member of the local technology collective riseup.net, providing secure communications tools for activists since 1999. Devin teaches immigration law as an adjunct professor at Seattle University.

Martha L. Schmidt  is a graduate of the University of Washington (L.L.M,  Law and Marine Affairs) and the University of Wisconsin (J.D.) Her diverse practice focuses on employment and labor law, focusing on conflict resolution in the work place on behalf employees, using mediation, collaborative law, conflict coaching and training. She was also an attorney/organizer for the Seattle Worker Center, the first staff attorney for the Unemployment Law Project, and a Juvenile defender in Snohomish and Island counties. She also is an international human rights law consultant, and has served as an election / trial observer in El Salvador, Venezuela, and Peru.

April 29: Reversing the Effects of Mass Incarceration: Ways to Reform the Criminal Justice System

jail hands

Tuesday, Apr. 29, 2014
6:00 PM – 7:30 PM, Gates Hall RM 133

The incarceration rate in the United States is the highest in the world, which has led some to call our current criminal justice structure a system of Mass Incarceration. This system—which contains over 2 million people in American prisons and jails—has decimated communities, especially those of color, created two tiers of justice, one for the rich and the other for the poor, and, in some instances, has resulted in government spending more money on incarceration than education. 

The University of Washington School of Law and the Gates Public Service Law Program invites you to a forum on how we as a community can reverse the effects of Mass Incarceration through implementing criminal justice reforms. The forum will cover sentencing reform, prison rehabilitation programs, and prison reentry.

RSVP here.

April 30: Yom HaShoah: Universal Perspectives on Holocaust Remembrance

Wednesday, Apr. 30, 2014
12:30 – 1:20 PM
William H. Gates Hall, RM 119

Holocaust Remembrance Bracelet

Guest Speaker: Reut Cohen, New Israel Fund Civil Liberties Law Program Fellow
Respondents: Rabbi Oren Hayon, Hillel UW; UW Professor Stephen Rosenbaum, UW Law

As the Holocaust (Shoah) is observed throughout the world this week and the UW community welcomes jurist, memoirist and concentration camp survivor Thomas Buergenthal, it is a fitting time to consider the contemporary commemoration of state-sponsored murder by the Nazi regime. Lawyer/Activist Reut Cohen writes: “We Israelis grow up in the shadows of the Holocaust. It’s always there and always very present. I don’t this this is necessarily bad, but I recognize two possible educational messages that derive from this: the first is ‘We must never let this happen us (Jews/Israel) again and have to do everything in order to prevent it’ and the second is ‘We must never let this happen again to any other nation or people.'”

Co-sponsors: (partial list)
Wm. H. Gates Public Service Law Program, Center for Human Rights, Law Societies and Justice, Hillel UW, Jewish Law Students Ass’n (UW Law), Center for Human Rights and Justice (UW Law)

May 6: Human Rights Webinar: Focus on Right to a Healthy Environment

pollution

Tuesday, May 6, 2014
11:30 AM – 12:30 PM CT
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM ET

The Local Human Rights Lawyering Project holds regular webinars to introduce legal aid attorneys to the Human Rights in the U.S. Handbook for Legal Aid Attorneys.  This webinar will focus on a new section of the Handbook that covers the right to a healthy environment.  The new section of the Handbook will be available shortly before the webinar on our website.

To register for this free webinar, click here.