Bullying, Human Trafficking and Educating Homeless Youth Are Among Children’s Legal Topics Explored at American Bar Association Meeting in Chicago
CHICAGO, July 24, 2012 — Bullying, trafficking of youth and educating young people who are homeless are chief among children’s legal issues that will be explored at the 2012 American Bar Association Annual Meeting Aug. 2 – 7, in Chicago.
With more than 1,400 dynamic presentations and events featuring high-profile law experts, the ABA Annual Meeting is the nation’s premier gathering of legal professionals. Among notable speakers are Ruth Bader Ginsburg, associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court (“Arias of Law: The Rule of Law at Work in the Performance Arts” and “Comparative Constitutional Law: North America and Middle East,” Aug. 3); Theodore B. Olson and David Boies, co-chairs of the ABA Task Force on Preservation of the Justice System (“Saving Our Underfunded Courts: Is Anybody Listening?” Aug. 4); and the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., president, Rainbow PUSH Coalition (“New Voter Registration Laws: Fighting Voter Fraud or Suppressing the Vote?” Aug. 5).
Online registration for news reporters is easier than ever. Credential guidelines are at http://www.abanow.org/reporter-resources/media-credentials/. Stay updated before and during the Annual Meeting by visiting www.abanow.org.
The 560-member House of Delegates will meet from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 6 and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aug. 7 in the Hyatt Regency Chicago East Tower (Gold Level, Grand Ballroom) to consider policy recommendations and vote on resolutions. During the two-day session, Morris Dees, co-founder and chief trial attorney of the Southern Poverty Law Center, will receive the ABA Medal, the association’s highest honor.
Among resolutions related to youth, the House will consider measures on child sexual abuse statutes of limitations and whether extending the statute of limitations is warranted; encouraging youth in foster care to enroll in postsecondary education; and urging the legal profession to help identify and respond to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders through training programs.
Children and youth programs include:
“An American Dream for Some? How Federal and State Policies Are Impacting Undocumented Students’ Access to Higher Education” – With the Dream Act facing an uncertain future, undocumented students face an uphill battle in gaining access to higher education. The nature of the challenge depends on the state the student resides in, as some states — such as Illinois — have passed tuition equity laws, and some — such as Georgia — have put into place policies that would drastically limit undocumented students’ access to enrollment in institutions of public higher education.
Aug. 2, 3:45 – 5:15 p.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago West Tower, Bronze Level, Comiskey
“The Right Idea: A Critical Look Inside the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, its Effectiveness and Challenges” – About 5 percent of public school students have a learning disability, ranging from hearing, speech, visual and orthopedic impairments to autism, emotional disturbances, intellectual challenges and other conditions. The panel will feature a discussion about the effectiveness and future of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act — including enforcement, eligibility determinations, discipline regulations and various procedural safeguards — and the role lawyers play in effectuating this important statute.
Aug. 3, 8:30 – 10 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago West Tower, Gold Level, Ballroom D
“Human Trafficking — Modern Day Slavery on a Global Scale” — The second-largest criminal industry in the world, human trafficking generates an estimated $32 billion in annual profits. According to the U.S. Department of State, 1 million children each year fall victim to the global sex trade. This program will present clips from Not My Life, a documentary that depicts the horrifying and dangerous practices of human trafficking in the United States and beyond, as well as a discussion by leading experts.
Aug. 3, 10:30 a.m. – noon, Hyatt Regency Chicago West Tower, Gold Level, Regency Ballroom D
“Meeting the Educational Needs of Highly Mobile Students: The Education Rights of Homeless Children and Youth and Those in the Child Welfare System” – Children and youth experiencing homelessness, and in foster care, share many similar obstacles to meeting their educational needs. This session will focus on multisystemic advocacy approaches to improve the educational outcomes for these populations.
Aug. 3, 10:30 a.m. – noon, Fairmont, 2nd Level, State Room
“Youth Sex Trafficking Victims: First Response and After”– Local law enforcement and other community-based entities are the most likely to first encounter victims of human trafficking. The goal of this program is to provide first responders and the community at large with tools to first identify victims and then to improve access to, and delivery of, services to victims of sex trafficking.
Aug. 3, 3:45 – 5:15 p.m., InterContinental, 8th Floor, Wright Room
“Leave My Child Alone or I’ll … What? — Using the Law to Stand Up to Bullies” — Across the nation, media attention on bullying of children and teens is causing more jurisdictions to implement anti-bullying laws and policies. This panel of experts will discuss the scope of the problem and the complex legal issues bullying presents. What new laws are being enacted at the federal, state and local levels? Is the law an effective means of addressing cyberbullying?
Aug. 4, 8:30 – 10 a.m., Hyatt Regency Chicago West Tower, Green Level, Crystal Ballroom A
Reporters may pick up their press badges at the meeting registration area at Riverside Center of the Hyatt Regency Chicago (East Tower, Purple Level). During the Annual Meeting, a press room for accredited journalists will be open in the same area, starting at 9 a.m. on Aug. 2. Thereafter the press room will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will close one hour after the House of Delegates adjourns on Aug. 7.
With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.
– 30 –
Editor’s Note: Reporters unable to attend the meeting but interested in covering the issues mentioned above can contact Patricia Gaul at 202-662-1094 or firstname.lastname@example.org.