In New Hampshire, the senate has overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment known as Marsy’s Law.
If it wins final approval from voters this fall, the amendment would enshrine a list of rights for crime victims into the state constitution. They include the right to be notified of when the accused is released on bail, the right to be heard at sentencing hearings, and the right to reasonable protection from the accused.
CLAIMS JOURNAL, 21 MARCH 2018, FEAT. PROF. BRYANT WALKER SMITH:
Just a few weeks before the deadly Uber accident, Arizona expanded its permissive stance toward autonomous vehicles. On March 1, the state issued an update to Governor Ducey 2015 executive order meant to reflect “advancements in technology and testing” of autonomous vehicles. In effect, the move permitted commercial robotaxi services, taking a step further than just allowing public-road testing, according to Bryant Walker Smith, an assistant professor of law at the University of South Carolina.
“The governor is in fact trying to facilitate more rather than less,” Smith said in an email.
The Uber accident highlights the need for transparent collaboration between industry and communities, said Thad Miller, a professor at the School for the Future of Innovation in Society at Arizona State University, who has worked with Tempe’s mayor on how to plan for the advent of driverless cars. “Road safety and these other issues must be addressed as larger policy, infrastructure and political problems,” Miller said. “Then we can ask: Where do AVs fit in, and how can they help?”
With the unveiling yesterday on its central campus of a nine-foot statue of lawyer, educator, and diplomat Richard T. Greener, the University of South Carolina acknowledged a notable individual and a significant moment in its own history: the Reconstruction era, when it became one of the only Southern state universities to admit, and grant degrees to, African-American students. Greener himself benefited from that opportunity. While teaching courses there in philosophy, Latin, and Greek as the institution’s first African-American professor, Harvard College’s first black graduate also studied law, earning his degree in 1876, a year before a new state administration barred black students from the school.
Officer Tyler Landreville is assigned to patrol in Zone 3, which covers southeast Jacksonville, according to his Sheriff’s Office personnel file. The document is unclear about when Landreville returned to patrol duties; and the Sheriff’s Office declined to provide a list of the officer’s recent assignments. It instructed the Times-Union to request time sheets from specific days to ascertain that information.
The challenge is an annual cyber policy competition for students across the globe to compete in developing national security policy recommendations by tackling a fictional cyber catastrophe. The challenge looks beyond the crisis to see what policymakers would do after an attack.
First-year law student Brooke Hiltbold, second-year law students Elliott Barrow and Michael Brooks, along with third-year law student Bryant Richard created their own team and applied to be a part of the competition. After successfully answering a series of questions about cybersecurity, they were chosen to represent the School of Law. They recruited Assistant Professor Bryant Walker Smith as their coach. Smith is a nationally-recognized expert in the field of legal technology, specifically how it pertains to transportation.
The competition is open to students across all academic disciplines. The one-of-a-kind competition looks to challenge those who will be leading the future cyber security world. Student teams will confront a breach of national and international importance. Then they will compose policy recommendations, and justify their decision-making process. Teams will be judged on their consideration of the roles and implications for civilians, military, law enforcement, and private sector entities.
In addition to the competition, students will be able to attend several side events. Legal and international service professors, along with Barry Pavel, senior vice president, chair, and director of the Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, Atlantic Council, will speak to students before the competition begins. Rep. Jim Langevin, D-RI, will give a keynote address during the first day of competition. Students will also have the chance to meet recruiters from companies such as CyberSec Jobs, the Department of Homeland Security, and Facebook. Teams will attend a presentation from Capitol Hill Staffers, a hacking demonstration, and a networking reception at Baker & McKenzie, overlooking the White House and the National Mall.
For teams who advance to the semifinals, a second day of competition will take place. This is the fifth year for the Atlantic Council’s U.S. Cyber 9/12 Student Challenge.
The D.C. competition is just one of three that will take place world-wide. In April, a similar European cyber competition will be held in Geneva, and in September, Sydney, Australia will host the first-ever Asia-Pacific leg of the competition.
In February, members of the Columbia legal community took part in a disaster poverty simulation coordinated by the American Bar Association and held at the South Carolina Bar Conference Center. Among the participants were students and faculty and staff from the University of South Carolina School of Law.
Through the use of role-play, the simulation provided an opportunity for the legal community to walk in the shoes of those living in poverty and gain a better understanding about why some low-income clients make the decisions they do.
“This isn’t even really ‘a day in the life.’ We call this just dipping your toes into the experience of so many people in our country,” said American Bar Association Disaster Poverty Simulation coordinator Alicia Aiken.
It was also a chance for participants to learn how they could be more effective legal aid and pro bono attorneys, as well as identify ways to improve responses to those in need. Ultimately, the hope was to equip participants with a more compassionate and understanding perspective of this population and the problems they face, especially when catastrophe strikes.
“It is our goal to educate the legal community, as well as the entire community in various states across this country, about the importance of preparing for disasters and how to recover from them,” said Chantis Floyd, chair of the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee for Disaster Response and Preparedness. Columbia was chosen by the committee as one of the simulation sites because of the historic flooding that occurred in 2015.
Participants read about their character’s backstory before the simulation begins.
The two-and-a-half hour simulation was broken up into five “weeks,” with each week lasting approximately 15 minutes in real time. When attendees entered the simulation, they were given character profiles, including their character’s name and a brief backstory of their experiences. They were then broken into teams, each with a family name and the goal of meeting their families’ most basic needs. Volunteers took on roles as bank representatives, social service workers, day-care providers, legal aid attorneys, grocers and employers, all offering services or goods the families needed to survive.
But just like in real life, not everyone enjoyed the same privileges. For instance, a police officer patrolled the simulation, stopping families and demanding to see social security cards for each member. Those families who were never given identification cards were evicted, denied employment, or even taken to jail.
For children, each day began with a trip to school. Before entering the classroom, students had to present a slip that proved they had eaten dinner the night before. Those slips were acquired only when their parents visited the grocer, or took them to “Bonnie’s Burgers,” the local fast food chain that was in walking distance from their house. Without the slip, students had to return home, forcing parents to miss work and consequently have even less money for that night’s meal.
Police officers patrolled the simulation.
What’s more, some of the characters were given name tags with colored dots. Each color corresponded to how the volunteers were instructed to treat them. Red dots were for those considered to be shiftless or lazy, and always looking for a free handout. Characters with green dots were viewed as dangerous, or possibly wanted by the law. Blue dots were for those seen as a best friends, or trusted people.
“The dots are relatively new to this simulation in particular, and it’s to help understand implicit bias,” said Sharon Terrill, program specialist for the ABA.
First-year law student Brooke Hiltbold was assigned the character of a 24-year-old man, who lived with his girlfriend and her one-year-old from a previous relationship. Hiltbold’s character was employed, doing seemingly meaningless jobs such as stacking chairs, organizing water bottles and counting the carpet squares in the SC Bar conference room. But Hiltbold, who had a green dot, found that no matter how efficiently she completed a task, her character was challenged, as her employer assumed she was doing something wrong.
“My very first day at ‘work,’ they immediately started making snide remarks,” said Hiltbold.
As a 10-year-old boy, with a red dot, first-year law student Alex Zimmerman felt his character was being looked down on by the school principal, played by Susan Kuo, the associate dean for diversity and inclusion and a professor at the law school.
Professor Kuo played the school principal to “children” like first-year law student Alex Zimmerman’s simulation character.
“If I turned in my homework, it was just like, ‘Oh you actually did something well,’” said Zimmerman. “It made me angry being treated a certain way, and then seeing someone else getting preferential treatment… That was very frustrating.”
“I could see the shock and hurt on people’s faces when I treated them poorly—and not because of anything they had done but because of who they were in the game,” said Kuo. “That children experience this on a daily basis, especially from those with authority over them, is tragic.”
In week three of the five-week simulation, a hurricane hit the town, knocking out power and closing most businesses. Schools were turned into shelters, giving those families who relied on public school for child-care a new obstacle. Some of the families’ homes were randomly deemed unsuitable for living, forcing them into shelters or neighbors’ homes. Others were told the storm injured them, making them unable to work.
Throughout the simulation, almost every character was forced to make hard decisions in order to meet their family’s immediate needs—even when it meant negative consequences in other areas of their life. And for so many, trying to get legal aid was nearly impossible because of the circumstances or biases stacked against them.
At the end, all of the participants came together for a discussion about their various experiences, and to try to find ways to better address the issues, or identify problems that proved more important than previously thought.
“Everyone started working together to recover after the disaster hit. They were sharing information as well as personal resources. I hope people learned that our vulnerability and resilience in times of disaster depends not just on economic factors, but also social factors,” said Kuo.
Hiltbold’s character was unable to get legal services after she was injured during the hurricane.
Hiltbold said everyone should should go through a simulation like this.
“You hear about these things, but being able to get into the shoes of someone who lives this on a daily basis allows you to—even for a short time—experience some of the emotions and frustrations that people feel. It takes it to a whole new level. And helps us to incorporate that feeling into how we can promote change.”