April 1, 2016
The conference is a gathering of Guild members from the region — legal workers, law students, lawyers, and jailhouse lawyers — at which we make decisions about regional governance, share victories and resources, and learn more about the important work Guildmembers are doing in the Northwest.
The 2016 conference will be held April 9-10 at the University of Washington School of Law.
This year’s theme is intersectionality and the law. Highlights include: special guest panelist Natasha Lycia Ora Bannan, President of the National Lawyers Guild; keynote address by Dean Spade, Professor of Law; anti-racism training; panels on local resistance to mass incarceration and organizing for housing and economic justice. CLE credit pending for Oregon and Washington.
More information and registration link here: https://2016nwnlgregionalconference.wordpress.com/
April 1, 2016
The Portland NLG mourns the loss of one of its local stalwart members, Stuart Sugarman. Stu was a longtime and well-respected criminal defense attorney, representing countless activists and helping to coordinate mass defense for years in Portland and beyond, mentoring activists and lawyers alike in standing up for justice. His passing is a huge loss to the legal and activist community in Oregon.
The NLG is grateful for Stu’s tireless work in support of justice, and sends condolences to his friends and family.
Link to Oregonian story on Stu’s impact.
June 8, 2015
In the past several years, legal aid, public defense and public interest attorneys have integrated human rights principles rooted in international law into the struggles of the individuals and community organizations they represent. On December 12, 2014, the Portland chapter of the National Lawyers Guild presented a CLE program on Human Rights in the US: Incorporating International Law into Everyday Practice.
The speakers included:
- Lauren E. Bartlett, Local Human Rights Lawyering Project Director, Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at American University Washington College of Law, Washington, D.C.
- Gwynne Skinner, Associate Professor Law and director of the International Human and Refugee Rights Clinic, Williamette University College of Law.
- Steven Goldberg, Member Portland Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, former chairperson of the National Lawyers Guild International Committee
This is the first part of that CLE program running approximately 1 hour 20 minutes. The program was approved for 5.5 Oregon CLE credits.
The materials for the program are posted at http:wp.me/PwqDA-8e.
For questions and further information, contact Steven Goldberg at email@example.com.
October 7, 2014
The Portland Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild and American University College of Law Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law present:
This CLE will be held on Friday, December 12, 2014, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, at the Portland Building Auditorium, 1120 SW 5th Ave.
Detroit residents are challenging water cut-offs before the United Nations.
The Supreme Court cited international law in its decision striking down the death penalty for juveniles.
Increasingly, legal aid, public defense, and public interest attorneys have integrated human rights arguments into advocacy before judges and policy-makers, as well as integrating human rights principles into the struggles of the community organizations they represent. This CLE will provide public interest attorneys with practical strategies, sample arguments, and resources to integrate human rights into daily work at the state and local level in the U.S. Electronic course materials are included in the cost of registration. Speakers include:
Lauren E. Bartlett, Research and Training Director, Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at American University Washington College of Law;
Gwynne Skinner, Associate Professor of Law and director of the International Human and Refugee Rights Clinic, Willamette University College of Law; and
Steven Goldberg, National Lawyers Guild Portland Chapter, former chair of National Lawyers Guild International Committee.
The CLE has been approved for 5.5 credit hours.
Cost to Attend
- $75 (legal aid lawyers, public defenders, and NLG members)
- $175 (OSB members)
- FREE to representatives of community organizations (registration is required)
- Scholarships are available for legal aid lawyers, public defenders, new lawyers, legal workers, and law students. To apply, please contact Steven Goldberg at 503-445-4622 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Questions about the CLE? Contact Steven Goldberg at 503-445-4622 or email@example.com.
September 16, 2013
After weeks of difficult negotiations between R2DToo and Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz, Mark Kramer, NLG attorney for R2DToo and the NW 4th and Burnside property owners, announced the settlement. “There were a number of complicated hurdles we overcame to get this very positive result,” said Mr. Kramer. “The settlement is a ‘win-win-win’ for R2DToo, the property owners and Portland. Right 2 Dream Too moves to a home accepted as legitimate by Portland. The oppressive fines and assessments against the property owners will be dismissed. Although the lawsuit filed by R2DToo and the property owners will also be dismissed, all parties acknowledge that the issue is still open as to whether houseless people, with the permission of a private property owner, have the right to sleep safely on private property without interference by the city. That is an issue that will be fought in the future in a different case.”
Part of the negotiations involved collaboration between R2 and Commissioner Fritz to find a new home that would remain close to services and public transportation. “The site under the Lovejoy onramp to the Broadway Bridge has many positive aspects,” explained R2 Executive Board member Trillium Shannon. “Services and buses are within walking distance and the overpass will provide excellent protection from the elements. This is an historical first in Portland. Previously, the City demanded that Dignity Village locate their site in East Portland far from services and convenient public transportation.”
“Since October 2011 Right 2 Dream Too has provided shelter and other services for an average of 60 people per night who otherwise would have been forced to sleep on the streets,” says organizer Ibrahim Mubarak. “This self organized grassroots model is both legal and effective. But even with our success, a recent study revealed that close to 1,900 children, women and men in Portland are without a safe place to sleep every night. This agreement shows that the City is acknowledging the problem and starting to work with us instead of against us.”
August 20, 2013
Thanks to efforts by NLG law student Briana Swift, the Citizen Review Committee recently voted to disagree with the Portland Police Bureau’s finding in a police misconduct complaint. Floyd McCorvey brought the complaint to the Portland Independent Police Review Division (IPR) after he was stopped by two police officers and immediately questioned as to whether he was a pimp, merely because he had briefly chatted with a woman. The senior officer also made comments about his low-income housing, and told him he needed to stay in his own neighborhood.
Mr. McCorvey, who is African-American, alleged that the officers’ conduct was discriminatory. The IPR refused to investigate that allegation. Instead, it referred the matter to the Police Bureau’s Internal Affairs division to investigate whether the officer was discourteous. The bureau eventually found that allegation ‘unproven.’
Ms. Swift served as Mr. McCorvey’s advocate in his appeal of that finding to the Citizen Review Committee. At the appeal hearing, the Citizen Review Committee voted to recommend the Police Bureau change its finding from unproven to sustained on the complaint that the senior officer was discourteous to McCorvey. The Oregonian and the Mercury both wrote stories on the hearing.
The Bureau will now decide whether to accept the recommendation. If it does not accept it, the Citizen Review Committee will vote on whether to refer the matter to City Council for a final decision on the matter.
The NLG is working with the Oregon Justice Resource Center to expand its IPR advocacy program to serve more individuals who seek to file police misconduct complaints. While the NLG recognizes the many flaws with the IPR complaint system, it believes that its participation in the system as an advocate for complainants assisting will aid its efforts at reform.