Legal Clinics Newsletter - Fall 2017

This newsletter provides a snapshot of just a few of the noteworthy activities taking place within the Clinics this semester. These efforts illustrate steady advocacy on behalf of our city’s most vulnerable populations and vigilance to ensure that constitutional rights are upheld.


CIVIL LITIGATION CLINIC


Missouri Blind Pension 

After decades of litigation led by Professor John Ammann, a judge ruled in favor of the Clinics’ argument that the State of Missouri owed $26.3 million to more than 3,000 blind people who were underpaid by the Department of Social Services Blind Pension Fund. The attorney general of Missouri has until November 6 to appeal the ruling.  

Clinic Challenges Charges Filed During Ferguson Protests

Professor Brendan Roediger joined the National Lawyers Guild to argue before the Missouri Court of Appeals on a previously filed constitutional challenge to the charge of interfering with a police officer. The charge is most commonly used to arrest protesters and journalists. 

Foster Care Lawsuit

In conjunction with Children’s Rights in New York and the National Center for Youth Law in Oakland, the Legal Clinics, under the guidance of Professor John Ammann, filed a landmark lawsuit against the Missouri Department of Social Services alleging the overuse of psychotropic drugs on Missouri children in foster care. Since the suit was filed, the Legal Clinics have had a record number of calls reporting problems and similar stories. The case is currently in early stages of discovery.


Entrepreneurship and Community Development Clinic 


 

Trademark Project 

Professor Patricia Lee directs the Legal Clinics and serves as a faculty supervisor of the Entrepreneurship & Community Development Clinic’s Intellectual Property Section. Students participate in the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s trademark program and prosecute trademark applications for entrepreneurial clients.

Workshop Series 

Professor Dana Malkus supervises the Small Business and Community Development Section, which assists community-based nonprofits, social entrepreneurs and other community groups. Through a grant from the U.S. Justice Charitable Foundation, the ECD Clinic hosted a series focused on helping local entrepreneurs who live or work in North St. Louis/North St. Louis County, an area historically noted for low income and high unemployment. The program provided assistance and information to 189 people and built connections with more than 23 community organizations. 


Criminal Defense Clinic  


Representing Activists 


Members of the Criminal Defense Clinic recently traveled to Bismarck, North Dakota, to represent an activist accused of violating several laws during the Dakota Access Pipeline protests. Professor Sue McGraugh, social worker Lauren Choate and student Sam Ruhlman provided pro bono representation to a member of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe on four cases pending against him in Morton County. They were able to secure a deferred prosecution and diversion for their client. 

An Emphasis on Holistic Defense 

The Criminal Defense Clinic welcomed back mental health social worker Lauren Choate, MSW, to their holistic defense team. With the assistant of a social worker, the clinic can provide a full array of social and legal services to their clients, most of whom suffer from serious mental illness or intellectual disability. 


Events


Social Justice Week 

Students, faculty and staff participated in a host of activities during Social Justice Week. The Legal Clinics, the Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program, and the student organization Justice Equity Collaborative sponsored a CLE training, "Missouri Expungement 101." Professor Trish Harrison, Professor Patricia Lee, attorney Ted N. Gianaris (from Illinois) and attorney Sarah Johnson (from Missouri) provided free training on how to apply for an expungement of adult records or sealing of juvenile records in Missouri, as the law is set to change soon in both Missouri and Illinois.

 

'From Prison Cells to Ph.D.'

In October, the Legal Clinics, SLU's Doisy College of Health Sciences Department of Occupational Science & Occupation Therapy and SLU's the College for Public Health & Social Justice sponsored a lecture featuring SLU alumnus Stanley Andrisse, Ph.D. The biomedical scientist discussed his efforts to "ban the [criminal record] box" from college applications so that formerly incarcerated individuals like him can also be empowered to use education as a means of recovery.

 

Naturalization Ceremonies 


The Legal Clinics have long sponsored United States naturalization ceremonies. This year was no different. Together with University leadership, the School of Law welcomed 1,000 new citizens in September. Faculty, staff and students from the Clinics led the volunteer efforts in conjunction with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. 


Congratulations 


Promotions 

Congratulations to Professor Dana Malkus, who was recently named the Associate Dean for Experiential Education for SLU LAW. In addition to serving as a faculty supervisor in the ECD Clinic, Dean Malkus will focus on experiential education and practical skill learning outcomes for law students.

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Clinic Staff Anniversaries

  • LeAnn Upton celebrates her 5th anniverary with SLU. LeAnn was recently named an "Unsung Hero in Legal Education" by Missouri Lawyers Weekly.
  • Greta Henderson celebrates her 12th anniversary with SLU.   

Publications 


Patricia Lee

Shattering ‘Blight’ and the Hidden Narratives That Condemn, 42 SETON HALL LEGIS. J. (forthcoming 2018).

Access to Capital or Just More Blues? Issuer Decision-Making Post SEC Crowdfunding Regulation, 18 Tenn. J. Bus. L. 19 (2016); Saint Louis U. Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2016-19Peer Reviewed

 

Dana Malkus

Taste This!: Experiencing Transactional Lawyering in First-Year Contracts, THE LAW TEACHER, Fall 2016, at 7-11.

Value Added: Utilizing the MSW Perspective, CLINICAL LEGAL EDUCATION ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER, Winter 2016-17, at 8-10.


Brendan Roediger

Municipal Courts, For-Profit Policing, and the Road to Reforms, in FERGUSON'S FAULT LINES: THE RACE QUAKE THAT ROCKED A NATION (Kimberly J. Norwood ed., 2016) (with Thomas Harvey).


Save the Date 


  • October 11, 2018: SLU LAW Legal Clinics’ 45th Anniversary
  • October 2020: The Midwest Clinical Conference will be hosted at Saint Louis University

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