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COMMUNITY UPDATE
December 18, 2020

Dear Georgetown Law Community,

At a time when the pandemic has impacted so many, and the effects of racial injustice and other forms of social inequality are so stark, I have been inspired by the wonderful work of our clinics. Below we have highlighted a few examples of the many ways our clinical faculty, students, fellows, and staff have worked in new and innovative ways to protect clients from the effects of the pandemic and to promote social and racial justice during this time of dire need. They are a true example of our Georgetown Law mission that “law is but the means, justice is the end.” 

I am proud of their continued efforts and grateful to be a part of this incredible community during this difficult time. As we conclude this very challenging semester, I cannot think of a better way to celebrate our mission than recognition of this important work.

Thank you to each of you for all your contributions and best wishes for a wonderful holiday season. 

Best,

For Georgetown Law’s Criminal Clinics, A Banner Year for Compassionate Release Wins

The Criminal Justice Clinic and Criminal Defense and Prisoner Advocacy Clinic have significantly expanded their work on compassionate release cases – successfully freeing over a dozen prisoners who were especially at-risk of exposure to COVID-19 as the virus rampaged through prison systems. Initially represented by clinic faculty and the E. Barrett Prettyman Fellows – and now represented by clinic students – these clients have finally returned to their families and communities after years of incarceration. Read More
Social Enterprise & Nonprofit Law Clinic Pivots to Represent Nonprofits Confronting the Pandemic and Anti-Black Racism
 
During a typical semester in the Social Enterprise & Nonprofit Law Clinic (SENLC), students represent D.C.-area social enterprises and nonprofits working in a range of fields, including social services, education, and international development. During the atypical fall 2020 semester, SENLC students have not only pivoted to virtual representation, but they have also sharpened the focus of their representations to serve organizational clients who are responsive to the converging COVID-19 pandemic and our national reckoning of anti-Black racism. Read More
Breaking the Shell: DC Clinics Help to Expose Migrant Crab Pickers’ Heightened Vulnerability to the COVID-19 Crisis
 
This fall, the Federal Legislation Clinic co-authored a report on the unsafe working conditions for migrant workers in Maryland's crab industry. The report exposed workers’ heightened vulnerability to the coronavirus as frontline workers and made recommendations for change at the local, state, and federal levels. Read More
Health Justice Alliance Responds to New Challenges Facing Their Clients Due to COVID-19
 
The havoc created by the COVID-19 health crisis has made the work of the Health Justice Alliance (HJA) — using law as a tool to improve individual and community health and well-being — all the more important and impactful. HJA students and faculty have spent the spring and fall semesters of 2020 training their medical partners to understand their patients’ rights being impacted by COVID-19, developing know-your-rights and resource materials, and advocating for educational supports for students during this period of distance learning. Read More
IPIP Creates Cutting-Edge Guide to Clinical Technology During COVID-19
 
Georgetown’s clinics’ unprecedented shift to virtual teaching presented a crucial opportunity to the Intellectual Property and Information Policy Clinic (iPIP) to reassess how technology is used to support clinical work and reflect on how clinics can do so consistent with their ethical obligations. At the start of the fall 2020 semester, a team of iPIP clinic students began drafting Georgetown Law's first-ever guide to clinical technology. Read More
Juvenile Justice Clinic & Initiative Continues to Lead in the Fight for Racial Justice
 
Georgetown’s Juvenile Justice Clinic & Initiative (GJJCI) is on the frontline of the fight for racial justice in America’s juvenile and criminal legal systems, and the GJJCI policy team has been working hard in 2020 to mitigate the impact of twin pandemics – the coronavirus and over-policing – plaguing the United States. Read More