Ending Revenge Porn: Privacy Protections and Legal Remedies
6:30 - 8:00 PM
The results of nonconsensual online sharing of sexually explicit content, often by current or former intimate partners, are devastating both personally and professionally. We will discuss the effects of this form of abuse, learn about current and potential future remedies under New York Law, and examine ways to advise your clients on best practices to keep themselves safe online.
Lobbying 101: Having a Voice in New York City, Albany & Washington, D.C.
9:00 AM -
A practical introduction to the subject of advocacy and lobbying. The panel will cover the nuts and bolts of how to build an effective advocacy campaign--and how to do so within the law. A 50% discount will be granted to attorneys working for government agencies, public interest groups, full-time students and full-time academics.
"22 Lewd Chinese Women--
A Trial Reeinactment"
Chy Lung v. Freeman (1876)
6:00 - 9:00 PM
In 1874, a state official determined that 22 Chinese women traveling alone to America were "lewd"--that they were prostitutes. Applying state law, the official ruled that the women could not disembark unless the ship's captain paid a bond of $500 each. The captain refused, and the women were ordered detained. Legal proceedings followed, including a four-day trial and appeals reaching the Supreme Court, raising issues of federalism and civil and human rights. This presentation will tell the story of the women, through narration, reenactment of court proceedings, and historic photographs.
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One Step Closer to Having More Family Court Judges
City Bar Legislative Director Maria Cilenti (third from left) and fellow advocates in Albany calling for more Family Court judges.
New York moved one step closer to getting 20 additional Family Court Judges after the Governor signed the 2014-15 Judiciary Budget, which included a supplemental appropriation of $5 million to fund the positions. The City Bar has been a vocal supporter of increasing resources for Family Court for years, most recently visiting Albany with a coalition of organizations advocating for the additional judgeships. While the Judiciary Budget appropriation is a welcome and essential step, legislation will need to be passed before session ends in June to create the positions. The City Bar will continue to advocate for these additional Family Court judgeships until they are fully realized.
Military Justice Improvement Act
The City Bar supported passage of the Military Justice Improvement Act of 2013, S.1752 (“MJIA”), which would put legal decisions in the hands of experienced prosecutors, independent from the chain of command, for serious crimes that are not uniquely military in nature. (See 44th St blog for more details.) The MJIA would improve the perceived fairness of courts martial and ensure justice and accountability, by placing authority to prosecute and make other key decisions for serious, non-military crimes, in the hands of military prosecutors rather than the chain of command. In a report drafted by the Committees on Sex & Law and Military Affairs & Justice commenting on MJIA, the Committees argued that this much needed bipartisan amendment to the Uniform Code of Military Justice offered an “opportunity to modernize our military justice system and address the epidemic of sexual assault in our military.”
Despite bipartisan support from many Senators, as well as from veterans and women’s groups, the bill faced an uphill battle with the Pentagon and some high-ranking Democratic Senators opposing the bill. In March the bill fell short of the votes needed to move forward in the Senate. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, the bill’s sponsor, has said she will continue to advocate for this issue and may try to include the measure in the defense authorization bill later this year.
City Bar President Carey Dunne discusses the Association’s efforts to issue and convey policy recommendations on a wide range of topics, including gender related issues, to the de Blasio administration as it has taken shape. Check out his latest column “Beyond November: The City Bar and the New Mayor.”
In Case You Missed It
• The Mayor signed into law new protections for unpaid interns working in New York City. The law clarifies that the City’s Human Rights Laws also cover interns in the workplace from discrimination and sexual harassment.
• New York City expanded its paid sick leave law to require that businesses with five or more employees must provide at least five paid sick days a year. The law went into effect on April 1st.
Protecting Social Welfare
In a joint letter to the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services, the Committees on Children & the Law; Civil Rights; Domestic Violence; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Rights; New York City Affairs; Sex & Law; and Social Welfare, as well as the Council on Children, outlined a number of suggested priorities for the administration which would serve to protect the social welfare and equal protection of New Yorkers. The suggestions include: 1) support breastfeeding mothers; 2) ensure access to subsistence benefits for the neediest New Yorkers; 3) improve the relationship between social welfare agencies and vulnerable New Yorkers such as individuals with disabilities, survivors of domestic violence, sponsored immigrants and LGBTQ individuals; and 4) implement new tools to promote child wellness.
Gender Related Laws and Policy
In a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio, the Committee on Sex and Law urges the administration to focus on a number of key issues concerning gender-related law and policy including: 1) supporting the extension of accommodations for breastfeeding mothers to college and university students; 2) enhancing public education about a breastfeeding mother’s right to express milk in the workplace; 3) strengthening the City's commitment to teaching comprehensive, medically-accurate sexuality education in public schools; and 4) strengthening the City's commitment to punishing the perpetrators of human trafficking and providing supportive services to its victims.
Anti-Homosexuality Legislation in Uganda
In a letter to the President of Uganda, the Committee on African Affairs urged him not to sign the Anti-Homosexuality Bill (the “Bill”) that was passed by Parliament in December, and to return it to Parliament for reconsideration. The Committee stressed that the criminalization of homosexuality and organizations that support LGBT rights, the exclusion of LGBT people from full and equal participation in Uganda’s democracy, and the draconian penalties in the Bill (including life imprisonment) run counter to fundamental human rights principles. The Bill also violates Uganda’s Constitution and the country's obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
Transgender-Affirming Hospital Policies
In its report, Creating Equal Access to Quality Health Care for Transgender Patients: Transgender-Affirming Hospital Policies, the Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights outlined a set of model hospital policies aimed at eliminating bias and insensitivity toward, and ensuring appropriate, welcoming interactions with, transgender patients. The model policies address the issues of confidentiality, non-discrimination, room assignments, bathroom access, and admitting/registration procedures – issues that, when mishandled, become barriers to health care for transgender patients. The report urges that hospital administrators and legal departments adopt these policies to ensure that their hospitals are offering health care that is non-discriminatory and transgender-affirming.
Committee Involvement--It's Never too Late
Committees are how the City Bar’s work gets done. Working on a committee can give you great experience while opening up a number of career doors, some you may not even anticipate.
A full list of the City Bar committees along with a brief description of each and an application form can be found on the City Bar’s website. As a number of City Bar committees have more applicants than available slots, please consider applying to more than one committee.
Have an interest in or questions about the City Bar’s legislative work? Send an email to email@example.com, visit our website or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.