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Civil Rights Clinic Faculty Presentation February 8th, 2012

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1 Civil Rights Clinic Faculty Presentation February 8th, 2012
Presented by: Professor Jason Huber Michael Antypas Evan Carney Jordan Dupuis Brendan Manning Windy Majer Leandra Murray Charlie Schmidt John Sulau Karen Vaughn Lindsey Vawter Ashely Washington


3 The Civil Rights Clinic gives students an opportunity to engage in real-world advocacy while at the same time advancing local civil rights causes. Among the current projects in the clinic this semester include: Democratic National Committee group, Mobile Food Vendors. Mountain Top Removal Ethics Complaint, Housing, Release-Dismissal Agreements Legal Dose, Ban the Box Clinic Members – Professor Huber, Mike Antypas, Ashely Washington, and Lindsey Vawter at the City Council meeting. Windy Majer and Evan Carney at Housing Training.

4 Release-Dismissal Agreements
Inquiry Do the North Carolina Rules of Professional Conduct permit a prosecutor to enter into an agreement with a criminal defendant to dismiss criminal charges in exchange for the defendant’s release of any civil claims arising out of the defendant’s arrest, prosecution, and/or conviction? Proposed Answer No.   North Carolina Rules of Professional Conduct 1.7(a), 3.8(a), and 8.4(d) prohibit the practice of using release-dismissal agreements based on the inherent conflict of interest they create between a prosecutor’s duty to enforce the law and the goal of insulating third parties from civil liability.  As several other states have determined, this conflict undermines the integrity of the criminal justice system by placing liability concerns over that of a prosecutor’s special responsibility as a minister of justice.  By prohibiting this practice, the Committee will assist prosecutors in fulfilling their constitutional mandate, protect criminal defendants from undue coercion, and in turn advance the truth-seeking function of the criminal justice system.

5 Release-Dismissal Agreements
We’ve filed in North Carolina, West Virginia, Florida, and the District of Columbia and then we’re going to . . .

6 Mobile Food Vendors 1) The impact of the 2008 Ordinance has decreased the number of Mobile Food Vendors from approximately 65 to less than 7. 2) The Ordinance has disproportionately affected minorities within the community based mainly upon the exemption for the area located within the 277 loop. 3) Proposed changes to the 2008 Ordinance:     a. Abolish the 400 foot restriction in commercial corridors;     b. Extend the hours of operation till midnight;     c. Extend the time period per location

7 Democratic National Convention
1. Monitoring City Council and city leaders - attending meetings, submitting written opinions, news coverage 2. Working with local, state, and national firms and organizations to coordinate advocacy efforts - NC ACLU, National Lawyers Guild, Coalition to Protest, Edelstein and Payne 3. Informing public on the rights and responsibilities for protestors and visitors to the DNC - blog, memo to groups, website

8 Legal Dose The Legal Dose is a weekly legal podcast that will serve the Charlotte Community offering news and perspective from the legal community. The show will examine legal issues and will give its listeners a voice in the field of legal news and will include reports from all the members of the clinic. Segments included in the show will include summaries of all the Clinic projects, a feature legal news story, news from the United States Supreme Court, biographies of Charlotte School of Law Educators, as well as news from events in the Charlotte Community, and a legal question of the week.

9 Hearing Officer Training
Every week, the Charlotte Housing Authority holds Section 8 termination hearings to determine whether a participant’s voucher, and therefore their eligibility to affordable housing, will be terminated.  The Civil Rights Clinic has created a program that will train students to be hearing officers at these hearings.  A three-student panel will hear evidence and make the determination using federal statutes, Housing Authority guidelines, and compassion whether to uphold the recommendation for termination, whether to overturn that recommendation or whether to overturn it with certain conditions placed on the participant. Future expansion w/ student body will create a pro bono program.

10 Blog website
CRC Blog Blog website

11 Ban the Box Charlotte Coalition to Ban the Box is a grassroots campaign to end employment discrimination based on past criminal offenses.  The primary goal of the coalition is to encourage employers to remove questions of past criminal records from their initial application process to ensure that conviction histories are not being used as an automatic bar to employment.

12 Mountain Removal Complaint
- - Regards a public statement on the firm website containing: - A critique of a scientific study  - A request that potential clients call the firm if they would like to discuss legal strategy - Names of several of the firm’s attorneys along with their contact info. - Challenged under DC Rules of Professional Conduct 7.1(a) and 8.4(c) - DC Office of Bar Counsel opened an investigation on October 20, 2011 - The Clinic filed a response to the firm's reply on December 20, 2011

13 Greene v. Bartlett

14 -

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