University of Pennsylvania Law Review taking submissions for Public Interest Essay Competition

Attention UW Law Students! UW Pro Bono Honors Society deadline is right around the corner: Monday, May 9!

taupc7ah_400x400It is that time again: at the Center for Public Service Law we know that many of you have put in significant volunteer hours in your community and for causes you believe in. 2016 marks the fifth year that the Pro Bono Honors Society recognizes the public service efforts by all members of our UW Law community. Few law schools recognize the pro bono work of their faculty and staff together with students and we are proud to be leaders in this effort.  

We know many of you are not in it for the “award”, and appropriately so.  However, what the UW Law Pro Bono Honors Society gives us the opportunity to tell the story of UW Law and what our commitment to public service really looks like.  We are also able to pull together resources to help future generations of students connect to the volunteer opportunities that resonate for them.  So please take the time to do this!  Your efforts are greatly appreciated.   

Please share this important message with your volunteers and peers!

Pro Bono Honors Society Deadline is Almost Here- Monday, May 9!

Between May 2015 and April  2016, did you:

  •  Volunteer for IFAP, IMAP, SYLAW, CHRJ App Help, or ELS research project?
  • Volunteer for an emerging student-led pro bono project such as Trans Health, Ed Law or Jail Rights Project?
  • Do law-related pro bono work for a community-based legal or public interest organization?
  • Volunteer as a case manager or leader for a student-led pro bono project?
  • Intern last summer for a public interest organization and didn’t get a summer grant, stipend or externship credit?
  • Volunteer for a community-based legal services organization working with underserved communities?

If you can answer YES to any of these questions you are likely eligible to participate in the UW Law Pro Bono Honors Society!

Submit your online form so that you can be recognized with fellow students, faculty and staff with a Pro Bono Service Award at graduation!

  • For complete information please click here.
  • First time participants should click here.
  •  Returning participants should click here.
  • Questions? Please email Aline Carton-Listfjeld at acarton@uw.edu.

University of Pennsylvania Law Review taking submissions for Public Interest Essay Competition.

footer_shield2xThe University of Pennsylvania Law Review is pleased to announce its second annual Public Interest Essay Competition. The Competition is a national writing competition for students’ and recent graduates’ articles on the topic of social justice and the public interest. The winner will be awarded a $5,000 grant to implement the public interest proposal advocated in the article.

For more information and complete rules, visit https://www.pennlawreview.com/PublicInterestEssayCompetition/

Period for submissions:
Submissions will be accepted from March 29, 2016 through June 20, 2016 at 5 PM.

Eligibility: The competition is open to current students (classes of 2016, 2017, or 2018) and recent graduates (classes of 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, or 2015) of ABA accredited American law schools.

Format: The essay must be an unpublished, original essay 6,000 words or less, including footnotes. It must be accompanied by a grant proposal of 800 words or less.

For complete contest rules and timeline, please visit https://www.pennlawreview.com/PublicInterestEssayCompetition/

Video as Evidence Field Guide is here!

vae_coverimage_text_700x340After in-depth research, field work, cross-sector collaboration, and (a whole lot of) writing, I’m excited to share with you the first Video as Evidence Field Guide.

At the core of WITNESS is our steadfast conviction that video is a uniquely powerful tool for human rights change. But citizen video doesn’t often reach a standard for it to be considered legal evidence; and simultaneously, legal systems around the world have been largely under-equipped to handle the influx of citizen footage made possible by today’s mobile technologies.

The goal of the Video as Evidence Field Guide to is bridge existing gaps so that citizens, activists, and lawyers can — together — use video more effectively for justice.

Leadership Academy Offers Innovative Curriculum to Equity and Justice Stakeholders

 By Joy Williams, Interim Co-Association Director, Advancement Department, Washington State Bar Association and Katharine Nyden, Pro Bono Coordinator, Blue Mountain Action Council

access_to_justice In early 2015 the Washington Equal Justice Community Leadership Academy (the Academy) welcomed its third cohort of legal aid providers and community partners from across the state to participate in a year-long training program. An initiative of the Access to Justice Board, the Academy offers an intentional and durable infrastructure that helps develop and sustain a broad, diverse, and deep network of leaders committed to equity and justices. Fellows are drawn from the Alliance for Equal Justice and community-based social justice organizations. The core curriculum is built on the Sargent Shriver National Poverty Law Center’s “Seven Leadership Competencies” model. Taught by Shriver Center consultants and alumni from previous cohorts, Fellows learn to apply these competencies at four levels of leadership: self, organization, the Alliance, and the equity and justice movement.

 Read Cohort III Fellows, Joy Williams and Katharine Nyden, share their personal experiences, greatest learning, and takeaways from the experience.

 For more information about the Academy and/or to be notified of the request for applications for Cohort IV (slated to begin in early 2017), please contact Jennifer Werdell at 206-914-9406 or wa.ejcla@gmail.com.

You’re Invited to Join NCSD’s Third National Conference in DC!

September 24-25: National Coalition on School Diversity Third National Conference

NCSD Logo

Opening Reception – September 24th, 2015
Mayflower Hotel (our conference hotel)
Washington, DC

Main Conference – September 25, 2015
Howard Law School
Washington, DC

Join us for NCSD’s Third National Conference!
21st Century School Integration: Building the Movement for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Register today! (information about hotel accommodations is available on the registration page)

Who Attends and Why…?
NCSD’s conferences consistently engage a diverse group of 250-300 key stakeholders—advocates, researchers/scholars, educators, integration program directors, parents, students, and activists—in dialogue with policymakers and one another. For practitioners seeking support and training to be more effective in their integration efforts, NCSD’s conferences are one of few spaces where integration-specific professional development is available.

For more information, click here.

Are you a Strategic Thinker Looking for a Service Opportunity? Washington’s Access to Justice Board Could Use Your Help!

Opportunity for Service: Washington State Access to Justice Board

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The Access to Justice Board is seeking a strategic thinker with a demonstrated commitment to equitable justice to fill a seat on the Access to Justice Board.  Established by the Washington Supreme Court in 1994, the Board seeks to achieve equal access to the civil justice system for those facing economic and other significant barriers.  The three-year term begins in May 2015 and the position may be filled by an attorney or other community member.  The Board is especially interested in individuals who can help continue to build collaborative relationships with community-based organizations and the Alliance for Equal Justice.

To apply and/or learn more about the work of the Access to Justice Board, please visit www.wsba.org/ATJApplications are due January 9, 2015 at 5PM PST.

Request for Workshop Proposals: Access to Justice Conference

ATJ Workshop

Wenatchee Conference Center, June 12-14

The Access to Justice Board’s Conference Planning Committee is now accepting proposals for 2015 Access to Justice Conference workshops.  This year’s conference will focus on solutions to address structural impediments to equitable justice and meet the needs of our growing client community.  We encourage and invite you to submit a 90 minute workshop proposal for consideration by the committee.  Proposals should be consistent with the criteria outlined in the attached document.  All workshops will take place on Saturday, June 13, 2015 at the Wenatchee Convention Center.

Proposals must be received by 5 p.m., Friday, January 23, 2015. Submit proposals using the attached form to Terra Nevitt, terran@wsba.org. Electronic submissions only please. The conference planning committee will select the workshops and plenary sessions. You will be notified as soon as the final decisions have been made whether or not your proposal was selected. If your proposal is selected you will receive more detailed information about the conference planning process, procedures, policies and deadlines.  If you have questions, please call Terra at (206) 727-8282.

Washington State Association for Justice Offering Bar Preparation Scholarship for Diversity and Women, Apply Now for Exam Dates in July 2015/February 2016

WSAJ Logo

The Mission of the Washington State Association for Justice (WSAJ) is to stand up in the courtroom and the halls of government for real people. We defend your Constitutional rights, including the right to have your day in court. We hold corporate and other powerful interests accountable. We are a community creating and sharing resources for our members to secure justice.

WSAJ is committed to implementing strategies that will result in significant and measurable progress towards increasing diversity in the plaintiff’s bar. To help achieve this endeavor, WSAJ has pledged scholarship monies to assist diverse individuals in covering the tuition cost of a bar preparation course. Diversity refers to individuals who self-identify with those groups historically discriminated against and or those groups that are historically under-represented in the legal profession based on disability, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. Scholarship recipients will be selected based on several criteria, including (but not limited to) demonstrated interest and intent to practice in the plaintiff’s bar, financial need, academic achievements, extracurricular and community activities, and life experiences. No single criteria is determinative.

Applications are due by Monday, January 12, 2015. 

For more information on the diversity scholarship, click here.
For more information on the scholarship for women, click here.

Lawyers Fostering Independence Offering Free CLE This Friday

CCYJ

Lawyers Fostering Independence (LFI) provides free civil legal services to young people who have been in foster, group, or kinship care at some point while growing up. With the help of volunteer attorneys, our mission is to improve outcomes for former foster youth by providing them with access to legal services – services that can mitigate the specific adversities experienced by these youth who have been raised in our care.

Our all-day training is on December 5th from 9:00am-3:30pm at Garvey Schubert Barer.

The morning will consist of an introduction to LFI, hearing from former foster youth about their experiences and needs, and our Trauma-Informed Legal Representation CLE (1.5 ethics credits pending). The afternoon will include two training sessions: one on credit and debt issues and the other on sealing juvenile records and vacating adult records. 1.25 CLE credits pending for each of these sessions.

A light breakfast and lunch will be provided.

Contact Serena Holthe to register.  Click here for more information.

The Innocence Project NW  Freedom Fridays

IPNW

Friday, December 5, 2014
12:00 – 4:00 PM 
Dorsey Whitney, 701 5th Avenue, Suite 6100, Seattle, WA

Speakers:

  • Jacqueline McMurtrie is an Associate Professor at the University of Washington School of Law and the founder and Director of the Innocence Project Northwest (IPNW). The only resource of its kind in Washington State, IPNW’s mission is to exonerate the innocent, remedy causes of wrongful conviction and offer law students an outstanding education. Since 1997, IPNW has obtained exonerations of thirteen men and women who collectively served over 90 years in prison for crimes they did not commit.
  • Fernanda Torres is a Staff Attorney and Volunteer Coordinator at the Innocence Project Northwest (IPNW). She helps oversee the screening and review of applications for assistance and leads the litigation of non-DNA cases. She recruits and supervises IPNW volunteers. Prior to joining IPNW, Ms. Torres practiced criminal defense as a public defender and in private practice.

For more information, click here.

Pro Bono Opportunity with the King County Bar Association’s Housing Justice Project and Family Law Program

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The Housing Justice Project is a walk-in legal clinic providing counsel and advice, negotiations with landlords or opposing counsel, and limited representation for low income residential tenants facing eviction in King county. HJP clinics operate at the King County Courthouse in Seattle and the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent.

Apply to volunteer as an intern by January 25, 2015. For more information about the Housing Justice Project, click here.

Pro Bono Services family law programs promote family safety and equal access to the legal system by assisting domestic violence survivors, children at risk of abuse or neglect and clients facing barriers to accessing the courts due to language, disability or other factors. Programs include the Family Law Mentor Program, Kinship Care Solutions Project and Self Help Plus Program.

Position is open until filled.  For more information about the Family Law Program, click here.

Pro Bono Opportunity Working with Domestic Violence Survivors

DAWN Logo

Your role as a Family Law Legal Support volunteer will be to assist staff attorneys in their representation of the client.

Note that this position is based out of the Domestic Abuse Women’s Network (DAWN) offices in Tukwila, WA to support the ELAP DV Staff Attorney placed on-site at DAWN.

This is a volunteer opportunity provided by VolunteerMatch, in partnership with LinkedIn for Good.

For more information, click here.

Equity and Social Justice Work is Hard. Seriously Hard Work. No, Really it is.

Pushing Stone Graphic

By: Cultures Connecting Blog

Significant change, whether individual or within an organization can be challenging. Even when we want to change, it doesn’t happen easily. I recently heard implicit bias compared to a habit, albeit a bad one. Think about how hard it is to change a habit…

A couple of months ago, my brother in law was coming over to my house to pick up his dog after work. We’d talked earlier and he reminded me to leave the front door open for him. Then he sent me a text about 15 minutes before I was leaving as a second reminder. “Leave the door unlocked, leave the door unlocked,” I chanted in my head as I gathered my things to go. Then I went through my mental list of what I needed to bring with me, made sure I had it all, walked out, locked the door and left. His poor dog was locked inside.

Even though I wanted to change that habit and was focusing a lot of mental energy on doing something different, the moment I got distracted, I forgot and went back to what I do every day.

Now imagine there are a bunch of individuals trying to change an organization. But they’ve all learned and practiced habits of stereotypes, biases, and institutional oppression for years. Some have even gotten rewarded for this behavior by being told they’re a “good fit” at the company and getting promoted. Some are the founders of the organization or have worked there so long they see any mention of needed change as a personal affront. Others have been going along to get along, trying not to make waves by bringing up experiences of marginalization. They may even be telling themselves they imagined it or making excuses for oppressive behavior such as, “I know he didn’t mean it that way.”

Continue reading here.