OJD Week in Review: Apr. 22 – 26

Happy Friday and Happy Passover!  This week we have a new tip, a new post from the School of Government and another community event worth noting, a couple of new resources, and approaching deadlines for and updates to training and job opportunities.

fridaywakeup

Tip of the Week – Discovery

Defenders – you have a statutory right to discovery in all of your juvenile cases (§7B-2300-2303).  Don’t be afraid to use it!  Some jurisdictions provide it without a motion, but it’s never bad practice to file your motion regardless.  You can find a sample discovery motion and order here on our website.

From Around the Community

From the On the Civil Side blog, Jacqui Greene added a new post discussing the general statute concerning the confidentiality of juvenile court records.  In this blog, Greene answers two of the most common questions she has received about the statute:  “Who is the juvenile’s attorney?” and “What court can order release of a juvenile record?”.  You can find the full post here.

In honor of the 52nd anniversary of In re Gault, the Supreme Court decision that ultimately allowed children the right to counsel, the National Juvenile Defender Center will be hosting “The Story of (In)Justice” in at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. on May 15.  The event will take place from 6 – 8 p.m. and will feature and honor Yusef Salaam, a community activist and Central Park Five exonoree,  and Sarah Burns, award-winning filmmaker and author of The Central Park Five.  To register and learn more about this event, please check the link here.

New Resource

The Campaign for Youth Justice has recently released a new report.  This document, titled “Alternatives to Adult Incarceration for Youth Charged as Adults“, offers insight into new laws and programs that defense attorneys can suggest in order to ensure youthful clients receive proper treatment.  Please find the report here.

The National Juvenile Defender Center has released a new resource, “Juvenile Facility Checklist for Defenders: Advocating for the Safety and Well-Being of Young People“.  This checklist is designed to allow defenders to evaluate the facilities where their clients may be held.  You can view it here.

Job and Fellowship Opportunity

The deadline to apply for the  National Juvenile Justice Network (NJJN)‘s 2019 Youth Justice Leadership Institute is Monday, April 29. The Institute is a year-long fellowship program focused on developing a strong base of well-prepared and well-equipped advocates and organizers who reflect the communities most affected by juvenile justice system practices and policies.  This program is geared towards individuals of color working as professionals in the juvenile justice field, who may also be young adults who are system survivors themselves, or family members of someone in the system.  Each year, 10 fellows from across the country are selected to develop their leadership and advocacy skills in the context of a robust curriculum around youth justice reform.  The fellowship is completed concurrently with fellows’ current employment, so fellows do not have to leave their jobs to participate in the Institute.  The fellowship includes two fully financed retreats, mentoring and frequent distance learning opportunities.  Interested in learning more about the Institute, or know someone who might be?  To learn more or apply, find additional info here.

sorryjob

The Louisiana Center for Children’s Rights (LCCR) in New Orleans is seeking applications for the position of Staff Defense Investigator.  The responsibilities of defense investigators include working closely with staff attorneys and other defense team members to determine the scope, timing, and direction of defense investigation; reviewing and analyzing discovery, including police reports and other documentation; locating and collecting records; serving subpoenas; taking detailed witness statements; and thoroughly documenting all work and information in detailed memorandum.  The position requires a deep commitment to the defense of youth and to LCCR’s client-directed ethic.  Applicants must submit a cover letter; a resume or CV, including an email address and daytime and evening telephone numbers; and a list of professional references, including the name, address, telephone number and, if available, email address for each reference.  This posting will be open until Wed., May 1.  This position will remain open until filled.  For further details and to apply, please check here.

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) is currently seeking applications for two positions: a Staff Attorney and a 2019-2020 Gault Fellow.  The staff attorney is a mid-level position who will be responsible for conducting extensive legal research, analysis, and writing; will respond to requests for assistance from juvenile defense attorneys or stakeholders in the field; and may be called upon to provide training.  The staff attorney will work in partnership with our leadership team, staff, and community to advance NJDC’s mission and programs.  This position is open until filled.  The 2019-2020 Gault Fellow is a one-year fellowship opportunity that will run concurrently with the first year of the 2019-2021 Gault Fellowship.  The Gault Fellows collaborate with NJDC staff to develop legal and policy initiatives around a broad range of juvenile defense issues.  The Fellows perform extensive legal research and analysis for NJDC and assist with the provision of training and technical assistance to the juvenile defense community.  This position is an entry-level position intended for recent law school graduates and current 3L/4LEs (Class of 2018 or 2019).  The application deadline is May 6, 2019.  For more information, please go here.

The Forsyth County Public Defender’s Office is currently seeking a new assistant public defender.  The selected candidate will represent indigent clients charged with misdemeanor criminal offenses and will be expected to analyze laws, facts, written documents, conduct legal research, develop litigation strategies.   For the full job description and to apply, please go here.

Training

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) is thrilled to be hosting the 2019 Juvenile Defender Leadership Summit in West Palm Beach, FL from October 25 – 27.  As in years past, we look to our community of juvenile defense attorneys and juvenile policy advocates to help us build a vibrant and thought-provoking agenda that answers to the community’s needs.  For more on the proposals, how to submit, and the selection criteria, please find more info here.  All workshop proposals are due on May 6, 2019.  If you have any questions about the proposal or the proposal process, please feel free to contact NJDC’s Director of Training and Technical Assistance Tim Curry by email or call 202-452-0010.

Homer training.gif

The online registration deadline for the 2019 Defender Trial School, cosponsored by the School of Government and the North Carolina Office of Indigent Defense Services, will be June 25.  The event will be held Monday, July 8, through Friday, July 12, at the School of Government on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus.  Defender Trial School participants will use their own cases to develop a cohesive theory of defense at trial and apply that theory through all stages of trial, including voir dire, opening and closing arguments, and direct and cross-examination. The program will offer roughly 29 hours of general CLE credit.  The Defender Trial School is open to public defenders and a limited number of private attorneys who perform a significant amount of appointed work.  IDS has expanded the number of fellowships available to cover the registration fee, but please note there is a limited number of fellowships.  If you have any questions or would like additional information, please email Kate Jennings or Professor John Rubin or call 919-962-3287/919-962-2498.  To register, find a fellowship application, see the agenda, or find any other information, please check out the course page here.

The Southern Juvenile Defender Center (SJDC) proudly announces the ninth annual Regional Summit, taking place in New Orleans, Louisiana, June 7-8, 2019.  You’re invited to come together with your colleagues from across the Southern states to participate in this one-of-a-kind program.  If interested in attending, please register here for the Summit before May 13.  For out-of-state attorneys, partial scholarship assistance is available to cover lodging expenses on first-come, first-served basis.  Scholarship recipients must be willing to share a two-bed hotel room with another attendee and to pay $25 per night toward the cost of the room.  To inquire about a scholarship, contact Randee J. Waldman and Richard Pittman.  The deadline for scholarship applications is May 9th.  CLE credits have been applied for.  For more information on lodging, the agenda, and fees, please visit the Eventbrite page here.

The North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA) Juvenile Justice & Children’s Rights, Education Law, Criminal Justice Sections, and Minorities in the Profession Committee are proud to present the Racial Equity Institute’s (REI) “Groundwater Presentation: An Introduction to Racial Equity”!  This free event will take place on May 9 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Bar Center (8000 Weston Parkway).  More information and a link for registration will be available soon, but if you have any questions about the event, please contact Andi Bradford.  (Please note that while the event is free for everyone to attend, no more than 175 attendees will be permitted, so please register early!)

The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform (CJJR)‘s Youth in Custody Certificate Program will be held July 22 – 26 at Georgetown University in partnership with Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators.  This training is designed to help juvenile justice system leaders and partners improve outcomes for youth in custodial settings, covering critical areas including racial and ethnic disparities, family engagement, assessment, case planning, facility-based education and treatment services, reentry planning and support, and culture change.

That is all we’ve got for now.  If social media is your thing, please check us out on Twitter and Facebook, like and follow us, and make sure to subscribe to the blog!  Have a great weekend.

 

OJD Week in Review: Jan. 29 – Feb. 1

Happy first Friday and welcome to February!  Of course, this week there is a new tip, but we’ve also got another JJAC report, a new resource, and some new training announcements to share.

welcome

Tip of the Week – When Should I Receive the Disposition Report?

You should try to receive the disposition report prior to the dispositional hearing to review with your client.  If possible, try to get a copy of the report at least several days prior to the hearing.  While there is no statutory authority compelling the receipt from the intake counselor, there are local rules which suggest time periods.

JJAC Updates

The Juvenile Jurisdiction Advisory Committee (JJAC) has released its 2017 Annual Report.  This report features accomplishments of JJAC, data on the JCPC services, juvenile court services, juvenile facility populations,  education and clinical services, and more.  You can read the full report here.

Training

On March 15, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., the UNC School of Government (SOG) will be hosting the first North Carolina Criminal Justice Summit in the the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Carolina Club.  The Summit will be lead by SOG’s own Professor of Public Law and Government Jessica Smith and will feature national and state experts with broad-ranging ideological perspectives who will discuss key issues capturing attention in North Carolina and around the nation, including bail reform, overcriminalization, and barriers to re-entry, such as fines and fees, the criminal record, and collateral consequences.  Join the conversation as they explore how these issues impact justice, public safety and economic prosperity in North Carolina, and whether there is common ground to address them.  This event will be free to attend, lunch will be provided, and it offers 5 hours of CJE and free CLE credit.  Attendees are responsible for their travel expenses, including a $14 event parking fee.  For those arriving the night before, state rate and discounted rooms at local hotels will be available.  To apply for this course and find more details, please visit here.  Applicants will be notified regarding acceptance no later than February 15th.

wvpviw

The Office of the Juvenile Defender will be hosting a Juvenile Court Basics CLE on Feb. 27 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Cumberland County Courthouse.  Assistant Juvenile Defender Kim Howes will be discussing the role of counsel, how to communicate with juvenile clients, dispositions, capacity, appeals, and so much more.  Questions and concerns are welcome.  Three general CLE credit hours are currently pending for this training.   Please contact Marcus Thompson by email or call 919-890-1650 if you have questions.

Save the date!  The 2019 Regional Training for Indigent Defense: Special Issues in Complex Felony Cases will be held on March 21 at the East Carolina Heart Institute at East Carolina University in Greenville, N.C.  The training will focus on topics relevant to criminal law practitioners and is open to IDS contract attorneys and privately assigned counsel.  Participants will receive three general CLE credit hours.  Registration should open later this month.

New Resource

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) is delighted to share the updated 2018-2019 version of their Juvenile Defense Policy and Practice Career Resource Guide, which is intended to help law students prepare for a career in juvenile defense or juvenile justice policy reform.  Many law students, even those who are interested in criminal law, are not aware that juvenile defense, as a specialized practice, is a viable career option, and one that draws on many of the same motivations and skills as criminal defense.  Those students who are aware of juvenile defense have told NJDC they find it difficult to prepare for the job search in this field.  To that end, NDJC created this Career Resource Guide, which they hope will raise the profile of and help students prepare for a career in juvenile defense or juvenile justice policy reform.  The Guide includes information on coursework and externships that will help strengthen a candidate’s application in the juvenile defense field; resources to guide in the search for juvenile defense jobs, fellowships, and funding opportunities; and a list of offices around the country that provide employment and internship opportunities specific to juvenile defense.

From Around the Community

On Feb. 11 at 12:30 p.m., Duke Law School Professor Brandon L. Garrett and the Duke Criminal Law Society will be presenting and releasing their newest study, “Juvenile Life Without Parole in North Carolina”.  Garrett was awarded a grant from the Charles Koch Foundation to study evidence to inform criminal justice policy.  Through his research, Garrett prepared a report and will be sharing his findings with all attorneys working on juvenile cases at this event.  For further information, please direct questions to Callie Thomas.

Job Opportunities

On Dec. 1, Indigent Defense Services issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) in Caswell, Person, Alamance, Orange, and Chatham counties.  The current contracts for adult noncapital criminal cases at the trial level and per session court cases in those districts will expire on May 31 and renew on June 1.  The RFP (RFP #16-0002R) seeks services for adult noncapital criminal cases at the trial level, juvenile delinquency, abuse/neglect/dependency and termination of parental rights, and treatment courts.  Please note that the RFP will not seek offers for potentially capital cases at the trial level, direct appeals or post-conviction cases.  Also, the juvenile delinquency RFP will only include Caswell, Alamance, and Person counties.  The deadline for electronic offers is Feb. 15.  To access the RFP, please check here.

This is it for this week.  There should be more to come next Friday, but in the meantime, check out OJD’s Twitter and Facebook for posts throughout the week.

OJD Spotlight: Introducing Cindy Ellis

Cindy Ellis pic

Today in the OJD Spotlight we have the new juvenile defense contractor of Davie County, Cindy Ellis.

Cindy knew she wanted to be a lawyer even when she was little.  Back then she thought it would be glamorous, but now she says she knows it can be one of the most stressful, yet rewarding career choices.

In law school, she had the wonderful opportunity to be involved in a wrongful convictions clinic.  During that clinic, she and her classmates studied and watched an actual case of innocence unfold and a man released from prison.  It impressed upon her the importance of what lawyers do and how they do it.

Cindy became motivated to join the juvenile defense field after seeing too many children making mistakes that haunted them for years.

“So many studies have shown that our brains are not fully developed until well after the age of 18, yet we punish kids as if they fully understand their actions and the consequences of them,” she said.  “The cycle needs to be broken.  I want to help find ways for kids to make better choices and grow up without the stigma that accompanies a criminal history.”

Her greatest personal success in life is not one particular thing or moment.  Cindy said she is extremely proud of the fact that she has worked full-time since she was old enough to have a job.  Through undergrad and law school, she worked a full-time job.

When asked about her greatest professional success, she said this is also difficult to pinpoint.  “Anytime I have been able to help someone, not just with his or her case, but also with the things that landed him or her in court initially, I feel like I have been successful.”

In  life and in her professional practice, the Davie County attorney says there is one maxim she chooses to apply in both.  “Life is about choices.  I remind myself that the key difference between defending and being a defendant can be as simple as one bad decision.  Have empathy and follow the golden rule.”

As far as words of wisdom to impart on others, Cindy only said, “I am positive the juvenile defense community has many more words of wisdom to share than I, so please share with me (and with each other)!”

You can find more about Cindy on her personal website, https://www.cynthiaellislaw.com/, and her Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/cynthiaellislaw/.

 

Job Opportunity: NJDC Gault Fellowship

njdc logo

Recent law school graduates (Class of 2017 or 2018) are invited to apply for a two-year juvenile defense fellowship at the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) in Washington, D.C. starting in September 2018.

The Gault Fellowship is in honor of the U.S. Supreme Court case In re Gault. The Gault decision extended to juveniles many of the same due process protections afforded adults accused of crimes, including the right to counsel.

NJDC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting justice for all children by ensuring excellence in juvenile defense. Through community building, training, and policy reform, we provide national leadership on juvenile defense issues with a focus on curbing the deprivation of young people’s rights in the court system. Our reach extends to urban, suburban, rural, and tribal areas, where we elevate the voices of youth, families, and defenders to create positive case outcomes and meaningful opportunities for children. We also work with broad coalitions to ensure that the reform of juvenile courts includes the protection of children’s rights–particularly the right to counsel.

Responsibilities: The Gault Fellows collaborate with NJDC staff to develop legal and policy initiatives around a broad range of juvenile defense issues. The Fellows perform extensive legal research and analysis for NJDC and assist with the provision of training and technical assistance to the juvenile defense community. The Fellows work closely with juvenile defense attorneys, public defender offices, law schools, legal clinics, and nonprofit law centers to improve access to counsel and the quality of representation for all children. The Fellows write reports, articles, issue briefs, and fact sheets to inform the field, and additionally review the content and citations of all materials developed by NJDC. The Fellows may also assist in long-term research and writing on a variety of high-level reform projects. Each Fellow is expected to proactively initiate projects to improve the provision of justice in the juvenile delinquency system.

Qualifications: Applicants must be recent law graduates (Class of 2017 or 2018) with excellent legal research, writing, and analytical skills, an ability to work independently, and superb attention to detail. Knowledge of juvenile delinquency law is helpful but not required; a demonstrated interest in juvenile rights, criminal law, civil rights, and racial and social justice is essential. Applicants should be hardworking, self-motivated, well-organized, possess a positive attitude and a sense of humor, and have the proven ability to work with a wide range of people. The Fellow will be expected to begin the fellowship in September 2018, ending in August 2020, must be able to commit to the full two years, and must have the capacity for occasional work-related travel.

Salary and Benefits: The Gault Fellow works for two years, and is provided a first year salary of $45,000, with the possibility of an increase in the second year, plus full health benefits.

Application Procedure: Candidates should send a cover letter, resume, three references, and short (approx. 250 word) summary and analysis of the landmark juvenile rights case In re Gault, 387 U.S. 1 (1967), with the subject line “2018-2020 Gault Fellowship Application – [Last Name]” to inquiries@njdc.info as a single .pdf file. Applications are due Monday, October 30. Final decisions are expected to be made by mid-December.

NJDC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.