UW CAYLAC Clinic Helps Open New Opportunities Through Juvenile Justice Law

Starting Today, Juvenile Justice Law Opens Up Opportunities for Tens of Thousands of Washingtonians 

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By Columbia Legal Services

Today, tens of thousands of Washingtonians, and thousands of youth every year, will have significantly more opportunities despite childhood mistakes. This historic change comes as a result of a major juvenile justice law – the Youth Equality and Reintegration Act (SB 5564) – which was passed by the Washington legislature this past legislative session. […]

The prime legislative sponsors were Sen. Steve O’Ban (R-University Place) and Rep. Ruth Kagi (D-Seattle) and the advocacy was also led by students from the University of Washington Children and Youth Legislative Advocacy Clinic. More information on the YEAR Act is available here.

Read the entire publication here.

Washington Journal of Environmental Law & Policy (WJELP) Hosting First Annual Symposium on Ocean Acidification and Coastal Health, Now Accepting Paper Submissions

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The Washington Journal of Environmental Law & Policy (WJELP) invites submissions for papers focused on ocean acidification. Partnering with the UW Law Environmental Law Program, WJELP will be hosting an Ocean Acidification Symposium on November 6, 2015. Accepted papers will be featured at the symposium and later printed in an edited volume. Submitted papers should relate to the growing need for law and policy addressing ocean acidification, strategies to manage ocean acidification at various scales (local, regional, national and global), and other related topics (using ocean acidification to target CO2 emissions, sustainable aquaculture, land-based sources of water pollution, etc.). We also welcome proposals for symposium speakers. Paper submissions due by October 16, 2015.

For more information, click here.

World Health Organization Releases New Publication on Sexual Health, Human Rights and the Law

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Sexual health today is widely understood as a state of physical, emotional, mental and social wellbeing in relation to sexuality. It encompasses not only certain aspects of reproductive health – such as being able to control one’s fertility through access to contraception and abortion, and being free from sexually transmitted infections (STIs), sexual dysfunction and sequelae related to sexual violence or female genital mutilation – but also, the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination and violence. Indeed, it has become clear that human sexuality includes many different forms of behaviour and expression, and that the recognition of the diversity of sexual behaviour and expression contributes to people’s overall sense of well-being and health.

Continue reading here.

Judges Rebuke Limits on Wiping Out Student Loans

Janet Roth (Photo (c) Nick Cote, NYT)

By Tara Siegel Bernard | New York Times

[…] The judge, Jim D. Pappas, in his concurring opinion for the bankruptcy appellate panel decision in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, said the analysis used “to determine the existence of an undue hardship is too narrow, no longer reflects reality and should be revised.”

He added: “It would seem that in this new, different environment, in determining whether repayment of a student loan constitutes an undue hardship, a bankruptcy court should be afforded flexibility to consider all relevant facts about the debtor and the subject loans.” But the current standard, he wrote, “does not allow it.”

Read the entire article here.  Photo courtesy of Nick Cote, New York Times.

EEOC Bans Discrimination Against Gays in Workplaces

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By Sue Reisinger | Corporate Counsel

In a historic decision, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has ruled that all job discrimination based on sexual orientation is a form of sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The 3-2 decision, dated July 16, does what Congress and most courts so far have refused to do: ban discrimination against gays in the workplace. Until now only a handful of states and municipalities have done so.

The EEOC foreshadowed its decision in a field memo last February saying that workers are protected under Title VII from discrimination based on sexual orientation as well as gender identity.

Continue reading here.

Attention New and Young Lawyers! Service Opportunity with the WSBA, Due 8/14

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The Washington Young Lawyers Committee encourages WSBA’s new and young lawyers to apply to serve as a young lawyer liaison to one of the following sections:

Apply now! Deadline is Friday, Aug. 14, at 5 p.m.

For more information about the volunteer position and application process, click here.

Looking for a Career in Public Service or Simply More Direct Client Work? Check Out These Announcements

Are You Primarily Interested in a Career in Public Service Law? Has it Been a While Since you Last Met with Your Public Service Career Coach?

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Whether you’ve got summer plans lined up or not, now’s a great time to reconnect with your public service career coach. We can help you strategize and discuss internships, externships, fellowships, pro bono, clinics, post grad planning and beyond, not to mention interview and networking tips. Not sure who you should be meeting with? 1Ls and 2Ls should contact Assistant Director Aline Carton-Listfjeld or schedule directly in Symplicity. 3Ls should contact Assistant Dean Michele Storms.

Youth Opportunities Act Opens Doors to Thousands of Young Adults across Washington State

By Columbia Legal Services

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Photo courtesy of Abdullah üsame Deniz and StockVault.

OLYMPIA – Governor Jay Inslee plans to sign the Youth Opportunities Act (HB 1651) into law tomorrow, after years of negotiations resulted in overwhelming, bipartisan support for the bill from the Washington State Legislature. The Act will result in the sealing of 6,000-10,000 young adults’ juvenile offense records each year, allowing them to receive greater opportunities in housing, education, and employment. Championed by Rep. Ruth Kagi (D-32), and negotiated by Sen. Jeannie Darneille (D-27) and Sen. Steve O’Ban (R-32), the bill received near unanimous support in the Legislature.

“The Youth Opportunities Act eliminates a major barrier for many rehabilitated youth who can now contribute fully to their communities,” said Casey Trupin, Attorney with the Children & Youth project at Columbia Legal Services (CLS). “By supporting one of the biggest juvenile justice reforms in decades, the Legislature has offered a path for young adults to pursue education, employment, and housing.” For four years, CLS has worked closely with partners such as Friends of YouthFaith Action NetworkMockingbird SocietyChildren’s Alliance, and many other strong advocates to ensure this bill passed.

Continue reading here.

Looking for a Chance to Work with Clients?  The Moderate Means Program is Recruiting Interns for Spring and Summer Quarters, Applications Due 4/11

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Photo courtesy of StockVault.

The Statewide Moderate Means Program (MMP) is a joint venture between the Washington State Bar Association and the Washington State law schools. The goal of the program is to increase access to civil legal services by people of moderate means who cannot afford an attorney but make too much money to qualify for traditional legal aid services. The program is focused on the areas of Family, Housing and Consumer law.

Law students serving as MMP volunteer interns will interview potential clients by telephone to collect information and evaluate their cases. Qualifying cases will be referred by the MMP interns to participating attorneys who have agreed to represent Moderate Means Program clients for a reduced fee. MMP interns will be expected to commit to a minimum of five hours a week for the duration of spring quarter and this summer (one hour is a weekly staff meeting).

Click here for more information.

America’s Growing Inequality: The Impact of Poverty and Race Publication Explores Poverty & Race

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America’s Growing Inequality: The Impact of Poverty and Race, edited by Chester Hartman is now available in hardcover – includes the best articles and essays from Poverty & Race; with a foreword by Congressman Luis Gutierrez. The book is a compilation of the best and still-most-relevant articles published in Poverty & Race, the bimonthly of The Poverty & Race Research Action Council from 2006 to the present. Authors are some of the leading figures in a range of activities around these themes. It is the fourth such book PRRAC has published over the years, each with a high-visibility foreword writer: Rep. John Lewis, Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. Bill Bradley, Julian Bond in previous books, Rep. Luis Gutierrez of Chicago for this book. The
chapters are organized into four sections: Race & Poverty: The Structural Underpinnings; Deconstructing Poverty and Racial Inequities; Re(emerging) Issues; Civil Rights History.

Order here at the PRRAC discounted rate; see the Table of Contents here.

Missed the Recent SJT on Public Interest Post Grad Fellowships? Don’t Fret. We’ve got all of the info right here!

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Download our presentation slides here and watch the podcast here. You’ll find all of the essentials on the nuts and bolts of organizational and project based public interest post grad fellowships, how to find them and some strategies for successful applications.

Kirwan Institute Releases Second State of the Science: Implicit Bias Review 2014

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With the results in the Zimmerman and Dunn trials, introducing people to Implicit Bias research seems more important than ever. The Kirwan Institute is excited to be able to continue to support the field with this new edition of State of the Science: Implicit Bias Review. Chapter 1 serves as a primer to introduce the topic, capturing some of the key ideas that were discussed at length in the 2013 edition. The next two chapters focus on the newest scholarly literature from 2013 (Chapter 2 reviews many of these recent publications, and Chapter 3 takes a step back to reflect on some of the larger trends occurring in the field). Chapters 4 and 5 delve into the concept of implicit racial bias as it operates within particular domains, specifically employment and housing (building on the sectors discussed in last year’s edition: Education, Health and Criminal Justice). The publication closes with materials in the appendices that we thought might be useful to those who are seeking to educate others regarding implicit racial bias, including “A Conversation with an Implicit Bias Skeptic.”

Click here to download the report.

Hunger Strikers Released from Solitary Confinement at the Northwest Detention Center

Activists rally outside the ICE Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington on March 11, 2014

Photo of activists rallying outside the ICE Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington on March 11, 2014, courtesy of Reuters and Jason Redmond.

By Columbia Legal Services & American Civil Liberties Union

Federal immigration authorities have released hunger strikers from solitary confinement at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington. The action came after the ACLU of Washington (ACLU-WA) and Columbia Legal Services (CLS) filed a lawsuit seeking a court order to prohibit U.S. Immigration and Enforcement (ICE) from retaliating against detainees who engage in First Amendment-protected activities by placing them in solitary confinement.

“Our clients are very grateful to be out of solitary confinement after 6 days in it. This is a victory for free speech and fair treatment,” said Melissa Lee, Attorney and Institutions Project Coordinator with CLS.

“We’re very pleased that ICE has stopped retaliating against detainees engaged in peaceful protest. Punishing hunger strikers by putting them in isolation cells was an unlawful attempt to chill free speech rights” said ACLU-WA Legal Director Sarah Dunne.

Continue reading here.

Mediation Training from a Social Justice Perspective Conducted by the Social Justice Mediation Institute, May 19-23

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Hosted by the City of Seattle Alternative Dispute Resolution Program.

$450 if registration completed before April 15.  $500 after April 15.  Some fee reductions available.

35.0 CLEs (5.0 ethics) approved.  (There will be a charge of $25 for members of the Washington State Bar Association asking for CLEs.)

For application and more information, please send an e-mail to Vivien.sharples@seattle.gov

This institute prepares trainees to mediate while applying a social justice lens to their own techniques.  We explore how mediation can routinely replicate inequalities despite our intensions to the contrary.  Trainees gain strategies to address these challenges while still facilitating a process with self-determination about the outcome for the disputing parties.   Concepts from narrative theory are applied to equip mediators with additional tools for effectively understanding the dispute and building agreements.

For more information about the training, click here.