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Media Advisory: Constitution Project to Participate in DOJ Symposium on Indigent Defense
WASHINGTON - February 17 - Constitution Project President Virginia Sloan and several members of the Project's National Right to Counsel Committee will participate in the Department of Justice's upcoming national symposium on indigent defense. Taking place this Thursday and Friday, and titled "Looking Back, Looking Forward, 2000-2010," the program is the first federal agency-sponsored examination of the indigent defense crisis facing our nation in a decade.
This past June, in a speech before the American Council of Chief Defenders, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Department of Justice would renew its commitment to improving the indigent defense system and that the guiding principle would be "that justice shall be done." The Attorney General also applauded the Constitution Project's National Right to Counsel Committee report, Justice Denied: America's Continuing Neglect of our Constitutional Right to Counsel, saying, "The Constitution Project has done excellent work in describing the state of indigent defense in its report, Justice Denied. As the report pointed out, many jurisdictions have made great progress in their public defense systems in recent years, but wholesale improvements remain elusive."
Constitution Project President and National Right to Counsel Committee members participating in the Department of Justice's national symposium on indigent defense, "Looking Back, Looking Forward, 2000-2010"
Virginia Sloan, President of the Constitution Project
Rhoda Billings, Professor Emeritus at Wake Forest Law School, former Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, and Co-Chair of the National Right to Counsel Committee
Tony Fabelo, Director of Research for the Justice Center of the Council of State Governments, and former Executive Director of the Texas Criminal Justice Policy Center
Norman Fletcher, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia
Monroe Freedman, Professor of Law and former Dean at Hofstra University School of Law
Norman Lefstein, Professor of Law and Dean Emeritus at the Indiana University School of Law
Charles J. Ogletree, Jr., Executive Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School
Thursday through Friday, February 18-19, 2010
Mayflower Hotel, Washington, DC
In early 2009, the Constitution Project's National Right to Counsel Committee released Justice Denied: America's Continuing Neglect of Our Constitutional Right to Counsel, the most comprehensive report on indigent defense in 30 years. The report makes 22 recommendations for much-needed reforms to indigent defense systems nationwide. The National Right to Counsel Committee is a bipartisan committee of independent experts representing all segments of America's justice system.
To see a copy of "Justice Denied" and other materials, please visit: