☰ In this section

NACDL E-News

August 23, 2017; Vol. 16 No. 08

NACDL Responds to Racism, Bigotry, and Violence in Charlottesville, VA

On August 14, immediately following the recent events in Charlottesville, VA, NACDL issued the following statement:

NACDL is profoundly disturbed by recent events in Charlottesville, VA. While NACDL respects the First Amendment rights of all people peaceably to assemble and express their views, even unpopular ones, NACDL deplores violence, racism, and bigotry.

"What we saw in Virginia this weekend is indicative and symptomatic of the racism that permeates our justice system," said NACDL President Rick Jones. "White supremacy has run its course in America. We are all obligated to stand up to bigotry and racism whether in our streets and public squares or in our courtrooms."

NACDL and Families Against Mandatory Minimums Announce NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project

Collaborative Efforts Underway with the State of New York 

On August 21, 2017, NACDL and Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM), with support from the Foundation for Criminal Justice (FCJ), announced a major state-focused clemency initiative, the NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project, a program designed to help to recruit, train, and provide resource support to pro bono attorneys who will assist state prisoners to submit petitions to have their sentences commuted. Outreach has already begun to several governors' offices across the nation. And Governor Cuomo of New York has just announced a partnership with the NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project to develop the necessary processes and procedures to enable volunteer lawyers through the project to help prisoners seeking clemency pursuant to the Governor's initiative. The Project will provide logistical support for the governor's initiative, among other ways, by recruiting and training volunteer lawyers to help prisoners apply for clemency.

"We are committed to provide training and resource support to volunteer lawyers to facilitate a process through which applicants can have access to counsel who can expeditiously submit a petition that makes the case for a second chance," said NACDL Executive Director Norman L. Reimer. "We want the executive authority to see clearly that many offenders have learned from past mistakes and are ready to safely and productively return home."

"Those individuals who have worked hard to rehabilitate themselves and take responsibility for their mistakes deserve a chance to get out of the penalty box. Their families, communities, and state will be better off with their release," said FAMM President Kevin Ring. "We're excited to work with NACDL and Governor Cuomo on this important initiative and we look forward to partnering in other states."

"NACDL is proud to build on its experience as a Clemency Project 2014 founding partner in order to make this state-level clemency project a success," said NACDL President Rick Jones. "As a New York City defense attorney, I am especially pleased that Governor Cuomo is taking the lead in this effort. Our goal is to provide many hundreds of applicants with qualified counsel who will submit first-rate petitions. And our hope is that other Governors will launch their own programs, and we pledge to support them. It is long past time to recognize that people can change and that redemption is possible. This program recognizes that fundamental truth."

This project brings the collective experience of NACDL and FAMM as partners in the federal-level Clemency Project 2014 (CP 2014), to state-level clemency efforts. CP 2014, a partnership that also included the American Bar Association, American Civil Liberties Union, and the Federal Public and Community Defenders, provided pro bono legal assistance to prisoners seeking to have their sentences commuted under specific criteria set by the White House.

Similarly the NACDL/FAMM State Clemency Project will focus on training lawyers to identify eligible prisoners based on criteria provided by participating state executives. Project staff will work with state agencies to devise the most efficient way to connect applicants to volunteers, provide essential applicant information, and submit well-crafted petitions. The Project will have a state-based focus that will respond to the criteria articulated by each governor or state clemency authority, and will rely heavily upon local attorneys, law firms, and law clinics.

If you are interested in volunteering to take on one or more cases through the Project, please visit https://stateclemency.org or contact Project Manager Steven Logan at slogan@nacdl.org.

Rick Jones Sworn in as 2017-18 NACDL President

New York City attorney Rick Jones was sworn in as President of NACDL at the Association's Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA, on July 29. The oath of office was administered by the Honorable Rowan D. Wilson, Associate Judge of the New York Court of Appeals, the highest court of the State of New York. Jones has served two terms on NACDL's Board of Directors and one year as Parliamentarian. He previously served as NACDL's President Elect, First Vice President, Second Vice President, and Secretary.

Jones currently practices criminal defense in New York City, where he is the Executive Director and a founding member of the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem (NDS). NDS has gained national and international recognition for its innovative, holistic, community-based approach to public defense. NDS combines criminal defense work with the services of civil, family, and immigration attorneys, social workers, advocates, investigators, and others to meet the needs of its clients. Jones teaches the criminal defense externship at Columbia Law School as well as a trial practice course. He also serves on the faculty of the National Criminal Defense College in Macon, GA and is a member of the board of the International Law Foundation (ILF).

"The problem with our justice system is not that it's broken, but that it's racist to the core, and deliberately so," NACDL President Rick Jones said after being sworn in. "We are living in an age when it would be easy to take cover, keep our heads down, stay out of the fray. In many quarters it would be acceptable were we to say 'we're just biding our time, keeping our powder dry.' And while it might be acceptable, it would be wrong. Now is the time to lead. Now, more than ever, is the time for our voices to be heard. We must be courageous. We must be vigilant. We must be unafraid. We must be committed to eliminating the racism and sexism and classism that delegitimizes our American system of justice." 

Read more here.

2017-18 Newly Elected and Re-Elected Officers and Members of the Board of Directors Installed at Annual Meeting

NACDL installed newly elected officers and directors at its Annual Board and Membership Meeting in San Francisco, CA, on July 29.

NACDL's newly elected officers and directors:

Executive Committee

President: Rick Jones (New York, NY) 
President-Elect: Drew Findling (Atlanta, GA) 
First Vice President: Nina J. Ginsberg (Alexandria, VA) 
Second Vice President: Chris Adams (Charleston, SC)
Secretary: Martín Sabelli (San Francisco, CA) 

In addition, Jerry Cox (Mt. Vernon, KY) continues to serve as Treasurer for the second year of his term.

Board of Directors 

Daniel Arshack – (New York, NY)
Nicole DeBorde – (Houston, TX)
Marissa Elkins – (Northampton, MA)
Jeffrey Green – (Washington, DC)
Timothy McCarthy – (West Des Moines, IA)
Steven Morrison – (Grand Forks, ND)
Robert Toale – (New Orleans, LA)
William Wolf – (Chicago, IL)
Jeff Zimmerman – (Alexandria, VA)

Chris Wellborn (Rock Hill, SC) was appointed Parliamentarian by NACDL President Rick Jones at the July 29th meeting of the Board of Directors. Directors Nellie King (West Palm Beach, FL) and Richard Jaffe (Birmingham, AL) were selected to serve on NACDL's Executive Committee.

Philadelphia Attorney George Henry Newman Receives NACDL’s Prestigious 2017 Heeney Award

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, attorney George Henry Newman has been chosen as the 2017 recipient of NACDL's Robert C. Heeney Memorial Award. He received the award at the Association's annual membership meeting on July 29 in San Francisco, CA. This highly prestigious honor is presented annually to the NACDL member who best demonstrates the goals and values of the Association and of the legal profession.

"What makes the Heeney Award special is that it recognizes otherwise unsung heroes," said NACDL's Immediate Past President Barry J. Pollack, who presented the Heeney Award. "For decades, George Newman has provided invaluable service to NACDL, motivated solely by his desire to improve the criminal justice system. He richly deserves this public recognition."

Newman has been a dedicated member of NACDL for more than three decades and is currently in his fifth term on the Board of Directors. Since 2008, Newman has served on 14 different committees, including Public Defense, The Champion advisory board, and the Clemency Project 2014 steering committee. Newman also lectured at NACDL's 2013 Drug Seminar in Las Vegas. He also helped establish and later chaired NACDL's Council of Affiliates. Newman helped found the Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (PACDL), and served as the vice president of PACDL from 1988 to 1990.

Newman is currently a sole practitioner specializing in criminal defense in trial, appellate, habeas corpus, and asset forfeiture matters. A criminal defense lawyer for 40 years, he practices nationwide in the Federal Court system and throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the United States District Courts for the Eastern, Middle, & Western Districts of Pennsylvania, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the United States. He is certified as a criminal trial advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, and he has handled over 100 murder cases, including capital trials. Earlier in his career, Newman was an Assistant Defender with the Defender Association of Philadelphia.

Read more here.

Civil Rights Leader Vanita Gupta Receives Justice Award at the Foundation for Criminal Justice Awards Gala Dinner

Civil rights pioneer Vanita Gupta was recently honored with the Justice Award from the Foundation for Criminal Justice (FCJ). The FCJ preserves and promotes the core values of NACDL and the American criminal justice system. The award was presented at the FCJ Awards Gala Dinner at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, CA on July 28. The theme of the evening was "For the Public Good: Pro Bono and Liberty's Last Champions."

"Vanita Gupta's contributions to criminal law reform are precisely in the spirit of the Foundation's mission, and so we honor her and her work," said FCJ President Gerald B. Lefcourt.

FCJ and NACDL Executive Director Norman L. Reimer said: "No one in our time has done more to advance the cause of justice for all people than Vanita Gupta."

Ms. Gupta is a nationally recognized civil rights attorney who has devoted her entire career to protecting the rights of marginalized communities and fighting for equal justice for all. In March of this year, Ms. Gupta was selected to serve as president and chief executive of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The Conference has been representing advocacy groups taking action on civil rights issues since its founding in 1950. She is the first woman and the first child of immigrants to hold this position.

Dinner Chair and Past NACDL President and FCJ Trustee Lisa Wayne introduced Ms. Gupta, saying: "It is the year of Wonder Woman and how befitting to honor one in our ranks."

In Ms. Gupta's keynote address, she thanked the FCJ, NACDL, and those in attendance and said: "I am privileged to be your partner in persisting for what is right, and not stopping short of victory. This work has always required a profound reservoir of hope. I see all of you, and I am hopeful. It is often in times of crisis that we find our strongest voice, our solidarity, our power to fight hardest – and most effectively – to preserve the rule of law, to protect the vulnerable, and above all, to make justice real. It is an honor to fight along with you."

Read more here.

Attorney Jerome F. Buting Receives Champion of Justice Legal Award

Wisconsin Attorney Jerome "Jerry" F. Buting was honored Friday night with the Champion of Justice Legal Award from NACDL. The award was presented at the Foundation for Criminal Justice Awards Gala Dinner on July 28 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, CA. Champion of Justice Awards are bestowed upon those individuals who have staunchly preserved or defended the constitutional rights of American citizens and have fought to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime.

Buting is well known for his representation of Steven Avery as shown in the Netflix docuseries, "Making a Murderer." The series follows Avery in his trial for the murder of Teresa Halbach, for which he was eventually convicted. The trial was widely followed largely because Avery had previously been wrongfully convicted and served eighteen years in prison for an unrelated sexual assault and attempted murder. After Avery's exoneration, and after he had brought a lawsuit against the law enforcement officials responsible for his wrongful conviction, he was accused of the Halbach murder. The outcome of the Halbach case has been very controversial and has brought accusations of law enforcement and prosecutorial misconduct. The series also depicts the trial of Avery's nephew Brendan Dassey, whose confession called into question law enforcement interrogation techniques. "Making a Murderer" is largely credited with increasing public exposure to the problems with the criminal justice system. In a 2016 interview with Carolina Law magazine, Buting noted that the documentary depicts a side of the system not typically shown on the television screen. "There aren't really any defense lawyer role models," he said. "I hope people will see that you can do your job ethically, honestly, with integrity and represent your client. I am humbled by it."

"Jerry Buting, along with his co-counsel Dean Strang, epitomize the qualities that diligent, dedicated, and talented criminal defense lawyers display in courtrooms every day," said 2016-17 NACDL President Barry J. Pollack, who presented Buting with the award. "'Making a Murderer' plainly struck a chord with the public. People all over the country were able to observe top flight defense lawyers at work and see the reality of how our criminal justice system works – and how it fails to work. NACDL celebrates Jerry Buting for raising public awareness and exemplifying what is best in our profession."

Read more here.

Massachusetts Public Defense Leader Anthony J. Benedetti Receives NACDL’s Champion of State Criminal Justice Reform Award

Anthony J. Benedetti, Chief Counsel for the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS) in Massachusetts, was honored on July 28, 2017, with the NACDL Champion of State Criminal Justice Reform Award at NACDL's 16th Annual State Criminal Justice Network (SCJN) conference in San Francisco, CA. The award recognizes an individual or group whose tremendous efforts have led toward progressive reform of a state criminal justice system. 

Upon being chosen as the award recipient Anthony stated, "I am truly honored and humbled to be given this award by NACDL, and specifically by the SCJN, which I have been a part of since its infancy."

Under Benedetti's leadership, CPCS provides legal representation to 285,000 indigent clients annually in criminal delinquency, children/family law, and mental health cases through a staff of 750, including 425 staff lawyers and 2,800 assigned private lawyers. Since being selected as the head of the agency, he has overseen rapid growth in the size of the agency in response to a legislatively mandated adjustment in how the delivery of services to clients is provided. 

"Anthony is one of the first people I met while doing legislative advocacy work in Massachusetts," said NACDL's Senior Advisor for Special Projects, Angelyn Frazer-Giles. "He is knowledgeable, helpful, and always willing to fight the good fight for those unable to fight for themselves. Anthony has been a welcoming face each year at the State Criminal Justice Network conference and his support of me and the SCJN community overall is truly appreciated. He is well-deserving of this award, and I look forward to continuing to work with him on criminal justice issues in Massachusetts."

Read more here.

NACDL Welcomes Introduction of Bipartisan Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) Modernization Act of 2017

NACDL welcomes the introduction of the bipartisan "ECPA Modernization Act of 2017," co-sponsored by Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and introduced on July 27, 2017, in the U.S. Senate. The time has long past for Congress to update the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) that governs how law enforcement can access our digital communications. Written before smartphones, emails, or electronic communications were fixtures of everyday life, ECPA has long needed to be brought into the 21st century.

"NACDL applauds Senators Lee and Leahy for introducing bipartisan legislation that updates our nation's laws to ensure that the Fourth Amendment continues in the digital age to provide protections against unreasonable searches and seizures," said NACDL Immediate Past President Barry J. Pollack. "This legislation would implement recommendations made by NACDL in its white paper, Electronic Surveillance & Government Access to Third Party Records. These steps are needed to ensure that electronic communications and cloud data have the same Fourth Amendment protections from unreasonable government intrusion today as hard copy documents have had since the founding of our country. Congress should act quickly to pass this important legislation."

This legislation affirms that Fourth Amendment protections apply to the content of electronic communications by requiring law enforcement officers to obtain a warrant to access the content of most electronic communications and cloud-stored content from third-party providers. It also ensures that the government is required to give notice when accessing such communications. The bill would also require the government to seek a warrant to obtain geolocation tracking data and includes strong suppression remedies to ensure that law enforcement does not overreach. 

To learn more about NACDL's work in the area of privacy and the Fourth Amendment, visit http://www.nacdl.org/fourthamendment. And NACDL's white paper, Electronic Surveillance & Government Access to Third Party Records is available at www.nacdl.org/reports.

NACDL an Originating Endorser of the Consensus Statement on HIV "Treatment as Prevention" in Criminal Law Reform

NACDL Director of Public Affairs & Communications Ivan Dominguez and NACDL Board Member Jo Ann Palchak, who was appointed by NACDL Immediate Past President Barry Pollack to head a newly-formed NACDL Committee – The Committee on HIV/AIDS Criminalization, worked with attorneys at the Center for HIV Law & Policy (CHLP), with whom NACDL has partnered with in the past, and others, on a CHLP initiative, A Consensus Statement on HIV "Treatment as Prevention" in Criminal Law Reform. Over a period of months, the statement was refined and ultimately was released on July 13, 2017, with originating endorsers including the CHLP, NACDL, the National LGBTQ Task Force, the National Center for Transgender Equality, Treatment Action Group (TAG), and others. As recited in the statement:

the undersigned agree... 

that reliance on viral load or compliance with medical treatment as a basis to reform HIV criminal laws poses dangerous consequences for those who lack access to care. It also contradicts everyone’s basic right to make health care decisions, including whether and when to get treatment, without running afoul of the criminal law. There is increasing agreement that risk of HIV transmission from a person living with HIV (PLHIV) who is on Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) and has a continuously undetectable viral load is effectively zero.

This fact has undeniable importance for personal and public health on many levels. Basing criminal law reform on this fact, however, could undermine key legal principles that support fair treatment for all people affected by HIV and other stigmatized diseases. As advocates, we should avoid the risk of using health status—most often determined by access to care—as a stand-in for determining guilt and criminal liability.

*          *          *

….Legal defense in individual cases certainly could include showing the PLHIV’s low viral load and related non-infectiousness; and nothing in this statement is meant to limit the options available to a criminal defense lawyer representing an individual client. However, advocacy that promotes putting HIV treatment and prevention tools into actual criminal laws will have negative, if unintended, consequences for many of those most likely to be targeted by criminal law enforcement.

In the announcement, NACDL Board Member and Chair of NACDL's newly-established Committee on HIV/AIDS Criminalization Jo Ann Palchak is quoted as saying: "The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers opposes all laws that base criminal liability and/or penalty enhancements on one's HIV status rather than on the intent to harm another individual. Modernization of these laws must be laser-focused on incorporating strong principles of mens rea and proportional punishment, and not an individual’s viral load or compliance with medical treatment."

The full statement and announcement are available at https://www.hivtaspcrimlaw.org. NACDL's unanimously adopted, May 21, 2016 board resolution "Concerning HIV Criminalization" is available at www.nacdl.org/resolutions.

NACDL Special Election Announcement
NACDL's Board of Directors will conduct a special election on October 28, 2017, to fill three vacancies on the board. Those interested in seeking election should consult www.nacdl.org/elections for deadlines, submission requirements, and other relevant information.
Group Admission to the Bar of the U.S. Supreme Court
NACDL is once again pleased to sponsor an opportunity for up to 12 members to participate in a group admission ceremony to the Bar of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. Participation in this ceremony, in which admittees are administered the oath of admission by the Chief Justice of the United States in the well of the Supreme Court, will be available to the first 12 qualified members on a first-come, first-served basis. This will take place on the morning of January 16, 2018. Members will be responsible for their own travel arrangements, must be in good standing with a state bar for a minimum of three years, and must submit their completed application materials to NACDL by November 13, 2017. Interested members should contact Lisa Ama Schrade, NACDL's National Affairs Assistant, at (202) 465-7638 or lschrade@nacdl.org, for further instructions.
NACDL First Amendment Strike Force and Mass Defense Unit Seeks Volunteers

NACDL has a long tradition of fighting to protect constitutional principles and standing up for the individual against the government. In keeping with that tradition, the Foundation for Criminal Justice (FCJ) and NACDL have established a First Amendment Strike Force and Mass Defense Unit. The goal of this project is to provide qualified counsel to represent protesters when the exercise of First Amendment rights results in arrest and prosecution. Specifically, NACDL supports a cadre of criminal defense lawyers who will be available to provide pro bono assistance to protesters throughout the country in the event of mass arrests. For those lawyers who volunteer, NACDL will maintain a database of available counsel and provide training and support at no cost. 

Lawyers wishing to volunteer, please send an email to firstamendment@nacdl.org providing your bar number and indicating the state(s) in which you are admitted and are willing to provide pro bono assistance in the event of arrests related to mass protests. 

Please stay tuned for a formal announcement from NACDL and FCJ of the launch of this initiative, once the infrastructure is in place.

2017 NACDL White Collar Summer Series: Defending the Executive Branch: Investigations & Impeachment Proceedings

This panel will discuss how congressional and law enforcement investigations of the executive branch of government present unique issues, including those related to separation of powers, executive privilege, attorney-client privilege, the role of the judiciary, and, of course, impeachment. The panel will discuss these issues and others, providing insights on how lawyers for key players in these cases represent their clients effectively.

This complimentary CLE program is in Washington D.C. at 4 p.m. on Thursday, September 28, 2017.

For more information about the program, its location, and to register, click here.

Watch NACDL’s Webinar "Challenging Government Hacking in Criminal Cases"
Recent changes to the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure have paved the way for the government to hack into people's computers in search of evidence. On August 9, NACDL hosted a free webinar to assist defense lawyers in recognizing and challenging evidence seized by government hacking. The webinar featured Colin Fieman, an Assistant Federal Public Defender in Tacoma, WA, who effectively challenged government hacking, and Paul Ohm, Georgetown Law professor and former computer scientist who served in the department of Justice's Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section. Our speakers drew from legal and technological expertise to prepare defense lawyers to challenge hacking as an investigative technique. Watch the recording and explore the guide published by the American Civil Liberties Union with input from NACDL and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
Martindale-Nolo Webinar (In Partnership with NACDL): How Successful Attorneys Win More Clients

Criminal defense lawyers work hard to obtain client leads and referrals for their law firms. Learn from this panel of online marketing and legal professionals as they share best practices, new technology, and intake resources that have helped attorneys win more clients.

Key Topics: 

  • Top 3 online lead gen tactics
  • Critical response time and follow-up best practices
  • How many leads it takes to close a deal
  • A simple, but effective email nurturing campaign
  • Cost-effective virtual receptionist services to close more deals
  • Intake practices & technology

For more information and to register for this free webinar being held on September 12 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. ET, click here.

Legislative Advocacy

Federal Legislative Tracking 

Click here for a complete listing of all federal legislation NACDL is currently tracking. For more information on a specific bill or to learn NACDL's position, please contact Monica Reid, NACDL's Grassroots Advocacy Manager, at mreid@nacdl.org.

State Legislative Tracking 

Click here for a complete listing of all legislation NACDL is currently tracking, sorted by issue area. Under each issue area you can either view legislation in select states or view all legislation. To jump to your particular state of interest, just click on the state on the map.

Advocacy Resources: What NACDL Can Do for You 

Visit NACDL's Take Action webpage for state and federal legislative updates and action alerts. You can find more advocacy information and resources in NACDL's Advocacy Resource Library.

Please contact NACDL's Grassroots Advocacy Manager, Monica L. Reid, at mreid@nacdl.org for any advocacy question or need.

Federal Action Alerts

Federal Forfeiture Laws Need Reform Now! 

Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently rescinded civil asset forfeiture policy changes that his predecessor had implemented. Attorney General Holder had scaled back the Department of Justice's "Equitable Sharing" program in situations where forfeitures occurred without warrants or criminal charges. Sessions has now revived the controversial program's "adoptive seizures" policy that allows state and local law enforcement to seize assets and then transfer those assets to federal control in evasion of state laws that would otherwise have limited or prohibited the forfeitures.

Now is the time for Congress to pass forfeiture reform! Currently pending is the "Fifth Amendment Integrity Restoration Act of 2017" or the "FAIR Act" (H.R. 1555/S.642). The FAIR Act would reform federal civil forfeiture law by giving property owners more protections and reducing the profit incentive to law enforcement agencies.

Ask your Members of Congress to pass the FAIR Act. 

Act Now to Stop Congress from Fueling the War on Drugs - House Bill Advances from Judiciary Committee 

NACDL is continuing to see a trend of “tough-on-crime” criminal justice bills and policies, some of which seek to add fuel to the failed War on Drugs. The latest bill following this trend is the "Stop Importation and Trafficking of Synthetic Analogues Act of 2017" or "SITSA."

H.R. 2851/S. 1327 would expand the penalties for drug offenses, add mandatory minimum sentences to the federal code, and give the Attorney General power to decide which drugs should be criminalized and to set criminal penalties. In mid-July, Attorney General Jeff Sessions pinned an op-ed in the Washington Post to justify his policy directive rolling back the Smart on Crime policy and reinstituting the use of mandatory minimum drug sentences. In July, the House Judiciary Committee advanced H.R. 2851.

Help NACDL push for meaningful criminal justice reforms that will reduce the nation’s prison population, reform sentencing structures, and push back against regressive "tough-on-crime" legislation such as this.

Ask your members of Congress to oppose bringing back the War on Drugs!

Act Now to Stop ICE Agents from Making Arrests at Courthouses 

Since the onset of the new administration, there has been an increase in Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) agents making arrests at courthouses and other sensitive locations. These incidences have occurred in Denver, New York, Los Angeles, and other cities around the country.

Fortunately, legislation has been introduced to curb this practice - the Protecting Sensitive Locations Act (H.R. 1815 and S. 845). These bills would codify limits on immigration enforcement actions at or near sensitive locations and would expand the definition of sensitive location to include any federal, state, or local courthouse, including the office of an individual's legal counsel or representative, and a probation office (among other additional locations).

Act now to support legislation to curb this troubling practice. Ask your members of Congress to support H.R. 1815 and S. 845.

Take Action to Support Expanding Federal Expungement Eligibility  

The Record Expungement Designed to Enhance Employment Act, or the REDEEM Act, H.R. 1906/S. 827, would automatically seal and, in some cases, expunge juvenile records. It would also allow adults convicted of nonviolent crimes to petition a court to have their records sealed.

Help NACDL reduce the collateral consequences of returning citizens by contacting your Member of Congress today and urging them to support the REDEEM Act!

Take Action to "Ban the Box" 

Legislation to "Ban the Box" at the federal level has been reintroduced this Congress. The Fair Chance Act, H.R. 1905/S. 842, would require the federal government and federal contractors to postpone a request for criminal history information from job applicants until the applicant has received a conditional offer of employment.

Help NACDL reduce the barriers to employment for formerly incarcerated people by contacting your Member of Congress today!

Act Now to Prevent the Expansion of the Federal Death Penalty 

Currently pending in Congress is a bill, H.R. 115, that would expand the federal death penalty statute by adding a 17th statutory aggravating factor for the killing or attempted killing of a law enforcement officer, firefighter, or other first responder who dies while engaged in the performance of their official duties or because of their status as a law enforcement officer. The House passed the measure with a vote of 271-143. It is now awaiting action in the Senate.

Contact your Senators today and urge them to oppose H.R. 115!

Affinity Partners

Office Depot/Office Max 

NACDL members can save up to 80% off on over 93,000 products. Great "Back to School" deals available now. Shop online or in any Office Depot or OfficeMax store. Click here to shop online or print off a FREE Store Purchasing Card.

Law Pay Credit Card Processing 

Sign up for credit card processing services customized to meet the unique needs of lawyers and law firms. Click here for more information.

In Other News

Upcoming CLE Events
View the Calendar

Recent Updates to Restoration of Rights Project
View Restoration of Rights Project

Employment Opportunities
View Employment Opportunities

Advertisement Advertise with Us
ad
Advertisement Advertise with Us
ad