On January 29, 2019, a CLE panel on Access to Justice, Legal Needs and APA Communities was held by AABANY at Cardozo Law School. The panel was organized as a part of an impressive collaborative effort between AABANY’s Academic, Government Service & Public Interest (GSPI), Pro Bono & Community Service and Student Outreach Committees. The panel came from a broad mix of public interest attorneys, law professors and private practitioners. The moderators for the panel were Academic Committee co-chair Suzanne Kim (Professor of Law, Rutgers University) and GSPI co-chair Jonathan Hernandez (Staff Attorney, Legal Aid Society).
The panelists were:
Rina Gurung, Esq., Senior Court Attorney (Trial Part)
NYS Unified Court System
Donna Hae Kyun Lee, Senior Associate Dean of Clinical Programs & Professor
CUNY School of Law
Sussan Lee, Esq., Appellate Counsel
Center for Appellate Litigation
Beatrice Leong, Esq., Associate
Parmet & Zhou LLC; co-chair, AABANY GSPI Committee
Tiffany Ma, Esq., Partner
Young & Ma LLP
Pauline Yeung-Ha, Esq., Partner
Grimaldi & Yeung; co-chair, AABANY Pro Bono Committee
The event discussed how lack of access to income-based legal assistance and to the judicial system affects lower- and middle-income families and individuals, including New York City’s Asian & Pacific American communities that experience under-recognized poverty. Using multiple examples drawn from their own experiences as attorneys, the panelists discussed the impacts of this civil justice gap in family law, elder law, housing, employment law, domestic violence, immigration, language-access, and access to courts. The panelists also encouraged all concerned attorneys and law students alike to engage in pro bono work and community service.
Attendees at the event included AABANY President James Cho, numerous AABANY Committee Chairs, law students and attorneys from a wide range of backgrounds. Attorney attendees also received 1.5 hours of CLE credit under the new Diversity, Inclusion and Elimination of Bias requirement. After the panel presentation, Pro Bono Committee co-chair Karen Kithan Yau, made a direct appeal to all the attendees to support AABANY’s monthly Pro Bono Clinic, whether as volunteers or as donors or both, as ways to help tackle the many pressing issues discussed by the panel.
Thanks to all of the speakers for a compelling and informative discussion. Thanks to all who attended and to Cardozo Law School APALSA and Cardozo Law School for hosting.
We thank Kevin Hsi, Co-Chair of AABANY’s Government Service & Public Interest Committee, for providing the photos and write up for this post.