Prominent Civil Rights Activists to Join Students, Faculty, and Community at Teach-In and Town Hall about Trayvon Martin Tragedy
Event will Shed Light on Legal and Political Issues in the U.S. Criminal Justice System
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 4, 2012 – The Black Law Students Association (BLSA) at American University Washington College of Law will host a teach-in and important legal discussion about the Trayvon Martin case, Monday, April 9. The program will feature a legal analysis of the issues, remarks by several high-profile civil rights experts and activists, including Benjamin Jealous, president and CEO of the NAACP, followed by a lively town hall discussion.
The controversial case surrounding the death of Trayvon Martin has captured national and international attention, and has raised numerous legal and political questions about the American criminal justice system. Participants from across the nation are expected to join the town hall meeting and following discussion via live webcast.
At the event, the law school’s Black Law Students Association will also host a letter-writing campaign to Attorney General Eric Holder to bring to light issues of racial profiling, prosecutorial discretion, and race-relations across the nation.
"As future attorneys, it is necessary for us to be pioneers in the legal community and to recognize miscarriages of justice in our criminal justice system,” said Black Law Students Association leaders and organizers of the event, Bethany Peak (president), Justin Clayton (vice president), and Preston Mitchum (member). “Trayvon Martin is one of many examples used to highlight the overarching problem of our judicial system. Because of racial profiling, prosecutorial discretion, and refusal to discuss race-relations across the nation, communities of color will continue to experience discrimination.”
“We decided to do this event because like many of our past and present leaders, it was time to take a stand for victims who never receive a voice. We pray for Trayvon Martin and his family and hope they get the justice that they deserve."
This event is sponsored by the Black Law Students Association (BLSA) in collaboration with the Program on Law and Government and the Center for Human Law & Humanitarian Rights at American University Washington College of Law, The Modern American, and other groups to be confirmed.
Media interested in attending should contact Megan Smith, (202) 274-4276.
Schedule of Events
10-11:45 a.m. - Teach-In and Q & A
- Lia Epperson, professor, American University Washington College of Law
- Darren Hutchinson, professor, American University Washington College of Law
- Andy Taslitz, professor, American University Washington College of Law
- Cynthia Jones, professor, American University Washington College of Law
- Amanda Frost, professor, American University Washington College of Law
- Hadar Harris, executive director, Center for Human Rights & Humanitarian Law, American University Washington College of Law
Noon - Town Hall Meeting (with audience and live webcast participation)
- Benjamin Jealous, president and CEO, NAACP
- Laura Murphy, director of the Washington Legislative office, ACLU
- Barbara Arnwine, executive director, National Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights
- Jamin Raskin, Maryland State Senator; professor, American University Washington College of Law
- Glenn Ivey, former state’s attorney, Prince George's County, Maryland
- William Yeomans, professor, American University Washington College of Law; former deputy assistant attorney general, Civil Rights Division, Department of Justice
1:30 - Discussion of Action Going Forward: “Where do we go from here?”
- Led by the Black Law Students Association (BLSA)
About American University Washington College of Law
In 1896, American University Washington College of Law became the first law school in the country founded by women. More than 100 years since its founding, this law school community is grounded in the values of equality, diversity, and intellectual rigor. The law school's nationally and internationally recognized programs (in clinical legal education, trial advocacy, international law, and intellectual property to name a few) and dedicated faculty provide its 1700 JD, LL.M., and SJD students with the critical skills and values to have an immediate impact as students and as graduates, in Washington, DC and around the world. For more information, visit wcl.american.edu.