Immigrant Women Law & Policy Project (LAW-795T-001B)
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The course provides students an opportunity to develop skills and use tools that legislative/administrative lawyers working in and with government utilize to craft negotiated public policy solutions. Students attending the course will work on current policy advocacy issues aimed at improving laws, policies, and practices to benefit immigrant women and children with a particular focus on immigrant victims of domestic violence, child abuse, elder abuse, sexual assault and human trafficking.
This two-credit seminar will examine the role of legislative/administrative lawyering in developing and implementing laws, regulation, and public policies. This course will review the legislative, administrative, and policy gains in legal rights under U.S. laws that attorneys and advocates have achieved on behalf of immigrant women, children, and particularly immigrant victims of violence (domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking and other crimes). The Professors offering this course were involved in the drafting of numerous pieces of federal legislation and implementing policies and regulations (e.g. the Violence Against Women Act, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act). Students will learn about the roles attorneys and advocates have played in these accomplishments, such as: drafting legislation, negotiating bipartisan agreements, drafting implementing regulations and policy guidance, collecting stories, documenting emerging unaddressed needs, and crafting public policy solutions that would work for immigrant victims, women and children.
Students participating in this seminar will select a practicum project that will involve communication and/or meetings with government agency staff (e.g., Department of Homeland Security, Department of Education, etc.) and will also result in the student authoring written work(s) of publishable quality that are submitted to Congress, federal and state government agencies, and/or courts. The course assignments span areas of the law that include immigration, family, crime victim services, public benefits, education, health care and housing laws. Each semester, the assignments available vary based on legislation, federal regulations, and government policy directives that are being actively considered during the semester the course is offered.
Over the last year, students who took the course and/or worked with the National Immigrant Women’s Advocacy Project (NIWAP) as Dean’s Fellows and volunteers participated in meetings with and submitted their written work to government officials at the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Education, Legal Services Corporation, the U.S. Department of Justice, the Office on Violence Against Women, Bureau of Justice Assistance, State Justice Institute, the Board of Immigration Appeals, White House officials, and Hill staff. Ongoing NIWAP projects include opportunities to develop training materials for judges, police and prosecutors, and drafting proposed regulations implementing protections for immigrant crime victims that became law as part of the Violence Against Women Act and the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2013.
In sum, this course will provide students the opportunity to develop the skills and talents required of a successful legislative/administrative lawyer who works in and/or with state, local and federal government agency personnel. Legislative/administrative lawyers practice law at the intersection of policy, advocacy and politics. Their legal expertise, combined with an understanding of the political dynamics of legislative and administrative systems, enable them to forge public policy solutions to problems that are effective, creative and politically achievable. This course will explore these skills and tools.
The syllabus for the Immigrant Women Law and Policy Seminar from Spring 2014 is available at http://www.wcl.american.edu/registrar/coursesapp/inf_course.cfm?number=LAW-795T-001A&time=spring_2014 Examples of the types of projects seminar students have been involved in during previous semesters are included at the end of the syllabus. To see more information on the types of information and work students taking this course and working at NIWAP produce go to our web library at: www.niwaplibrary.wcl.american.edu
If you are interested in the course and would like to learn more, please call: Leslye Orloff at (202) 210-8886.
We hope you will decide to join us.
Leslye E. Orloff Director, National Immigrant Women’s Advocacy Project (NIWAP pronounced new-app) 4910 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W. Room 110 202-210-8886 firstname.lastname@example.org
Ronald A LeGrand Counsel, U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on the Judiciary
Textbooks and Other Materials
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First Class Readings
Not available at this time.
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