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Interested in algorithmic justice? Here are ways LLNE members can help!

Don’t forget to register for the June 11th (this Friday!) screening and discussion of the acclaimed documentary Coded Bias. The event starts at 7pm EST: tinyurl.com/xr5dm9wf. The filmmaker, Shalini Kantayya, has also compiled an activist toolkit for those interested in becoming advocates for “algorithmic justice.” If any LLNE members would like to get involved, page 24 of the toolkit lists recommended organizations to which you can subscribe and make donations.

Another way to get involved is by signing the Universal Declaration of Data Rights as Human Rights, which was developed by the Coded Bias team. Upon signature, your name and zip code are sent to US elected officials. The committee is encouraging members to sign the declaration if they are interested in further supporting this cause.

We hope to see you on Friday!

LLNE Service Committee

Coded Bias Screening and Discussion

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We have another event coming your way this week! After the 2021 LLNE Virtual Spring Meeting, join us THIS Friday June 11 at 7pm EST for a screening and discussion of the documentary Coded Bias. See below for more information and to register.

Coded Bias Screening and Discussion
Friday, June 11th at 7pm ET/ 6pm CT/ 5pm MT/ 4pm PT

CODED BIAS explores the fallout of MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini’s discovery that facial recognition does not see dark-skinned faces accurately, and her journey to push for the first-ever legislation in the U.S. to govern against bias in the algorithms that impact us all. Join us for a screening of this acclaimed documentary followed by a discussion featuring:

  • Nicole Dyszlewski (moderator), Head of Reference, Instruction, & Engagement, Roger Williams University School of Law
  • Sarah Lamdan, Professor of Law, CUNY School of Law
  • Susan Nevelow Mart, Professor and Director of the Law Library, University of Colorado Law School

To register visit: tinyurl.com/xr5dm9wf

Sponsored by the Legal Information Services to the Public Special Interest Section, the Law Librarians of New England, and the Research Crits Caucus.

Events Scheduled in June by Asian American Law Librarians Caucus

This month, the LLNE Executive Board signed onto the Asian American Law Librarians Caucus Statement on Anti-Asian Incidents. We encourage you to review the statement and refer to the valuable resources it links to. The Caucus is now hosting a series of guest speakers, live music, movie watch parties, and a book discussion throughout the month of June. We hope you find an opportunity to participate in any number of these events. Please see the schedule below. 

Wednesday, June 2

12:00-1:00 PM Central

Anti-Asian Violence Amid COVID-19 Pandemic: New Episode in the Long History of Anti-Asian Violence in the United States and Educational Implications. Presentation byProf. Sohyun An

Dr. Sohyun An, Associate Professor at Kennesaw State University, researches social studies education. In the NBC News article, “Illinois House passes bill mandating Asian American history in schools,” Dr. An cautions, “if we don’t teach [Asian-American history] or teach it in a misrepresented way it can lead to violence” (April 15, 2021). Bio/presentation description and article attached.

Register for Prof. An’s presentation here

Friday, June 4

12:00-1:00 PM Central

Donut King Watch Party! (We’ll gather via Zoom, then each watch the film on our own computers, but with Google Jamboard open so that we can watch “together” and post sticky notes to communicate during the screening. Film is free on PBS.)

Genre: Documentary

Film Duration: approx. 1 hour 30 minutes (We will watch the first hour together)

Ted’s story is one of fate, love, survival, hard knocks, and redemption. It’s the rags to riches story of a refugee escaping Cambodia, arriving in America in 1975 and building an unlikely multi-million-dollar empire baking America’s favorite pastry, the donut. Ted sponsored hundreds of visas for incoming refugees and helped them get on their feet teaching them the ways of the donut business. By 1979 he was living the American Dream. But, in life, great rise can come with great falls. (https://www.donutkingmovie.com/synopsis/)

Register for Donut King watch party here 

Thursday, June 10

2:00-3:00 PM Central

Asian American Studies High School Course Curriculum, Presentation by Albert Chan

Niles North (Skokie, Illinois) High School teacher Albert Chan teaches one of the only  Asian American studies high school courses in the United States. He will describe his course curriculum. In the article, “TEAACH Act could make Illinois first state to mandate teaching of Asian American history in public schools,” he observes, “the lack of Asian American representation in school courses leads non-Asian students to fall back on stereotypes about their Asian and Asian American peers.” (The Daily Northwestern, April 20, 2021). Article attached.

Register for Albert Chan’s presentation here

Wednesday, June 16

2:00-3:00 PM Central

Simon Tam of The Slants, the world’s first and only all-Asian American dance rock band, will speak about his Journey to the U.S. Supreme Court, in Matal v. TamWith live music featuring Simon and The Slants’s guitarist, Joe X. Jiang!

Simon Tam is best known as the founder and bassist of The Slants, the world’s first and only all-Asian American dance rock band. He helped expand civil liberties for minorities by winning a unanimous victory at the Supreme Court of the United States for a landmark case, Matal v. Tam, in 2017. He also leads The Slants Foundation, a nonprofit that supports arts and activism projects for underrepresented communities.

Joe X. Jiang is a filmmaker and musician who has called Portland home for nearly ten years. His movies, which range from intimate documentaries to artistic narratives, have been featured at film and art festivals around the world. He plays guitar for The Slants as well as other groups based in Portland, OR.

Register for Simon’s talk & live music here

Thursday, June 24

2:00-3:00 PM Central

Kumu Hina – Amazon Watch Party! (Requires each participant to rent the movie on Amazon for $3.99)

Official website, with trailer

Genre: Documentary

Film duration: 1 hour 17 minutes (We will watch the first hour together)

KUMU HINA is a powerful film about the struggle to maintain Pacific Islander culture and values within the Westernized society of modern day Hawaiʻi. It is told through the lens of an extraordinary Native Hawaiian who is both a proud and confident māhū, or transgender woman, and an honored and respected kumu, or teacher, cultural practitioner, and community leader.

Amazon Prime membership not required.

Register for Kumu Hina watch party here


Wednesday, June 30

2:00-3:00 PM Central


AAPI Book Discussion – Choose your favorite (or any) AAPI book and come prepared to “show and tell” us about it!

Some suggested titles are on these documents:

·  Asian Pacific American Resources (pages 7-8)

·  Books by/about Asian American lawyers/judges

·  Books by/about Asian American politicians, civil rights activists, non-legal scholars

Register for AAPI book discussion here

VOTE NOW! For the 2021-2022 LLNE officer candidates

The 2021-2022 slate of LLNE officer candidates has been announced and now is your opportunity to vote. Please go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PHZYW9Zto cast your anonymous vote. The poll will close on Friday, June 4th at 5:00 pm.

VP/President-Elect: Josh LaPorte, Head of Circulation, Boston University, Fineman & Pappas Law Libraries
Treasurer: Rachel Weiss, Research Librarian, Nixon Peabody
Education Director: Maureen Quinlan, Reference & Gov Doc Law Librarian, University of Maine School of Law

New ‘Funtivity’! Coffee Masterclass

Calling all caffeine lovers! For our next free ‘funtivity’ we’re heading to Mexico for a Coffee Master Class. Join us on Tuesday, June 1st at 9am to learn about the best processes for brewing a great cup of coffee and a whole latte of other facts. To register and obtain the zoom meeting details, visit [tinyurl.com/zercsbps]tinyurl.com/zercsbps and for more information on this virtual experience see https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/1655017 .

“Law Librarians as Access to Justice Allies”

LLNE President Nicole Dyszlewski and Service Committee chair Jessica Almeida recently published an article titled, “Law Librarians as Access to Justice Allies” in Public Services Quarterly.  The article was part of the “Special Libraries, Special Challenges” series and discusses the how law and public librarians can be allies in working toward shrinking the access to justice gap.  It also celebrates the work of a great number of LLNE leaders such as Catherine Biondo, Mike VanderHeijden, Josh Laporte, Jessica Jones, and all the members that have served on the Access to Justice and Service Committees.

The article begins by looking at the history of the LLNE Service and Access to Justice Committees, including the various service projects that have been organized over the past twenty years.  One of the most successful service projects was the Legal Book Drive, which led to the creation of LLNE Legal Link.  The Legal Link website has become a tool for law librarians to share their knowledge with public librarians and self-represented litigants, through the use of best practices and resource documents. 

The article continues by discussing the committees’ work in outreach, specifically presentations at regional public library conferences that allow law librarians and public librarians to connect over access to justice issues.  Also mentioned is the creation of the LLNE A2J Twitter account that promotes Legal Link documents as well as the programs and resources of other legal organizations such as court libraries and bar associations.

Finally, the authors explore the areas that public librarians are most concerned about.  They discuss the unauthorized practice of law, what it is, and how and when to say no to a question that veers into legal advice territory.  The article ends with a section on how to write a policy that explains legal information vs. legal advice.  This policy can be used by public library staff to help patrons understand the legal questions public librarians can and can’t answer.  For more information on the article, please reach out to Nicole Dyszlewski at ndyszlewski@rwu.edu or Jessica Almeida at jessica.almeida@umassd.edu

Service Committee Project: The Prison PUP Program

In conjunction with the Law Librarians of New England (LLNE) FUNtivities , the Service Committee is raising funds for NEADS, an organization that provides service dogs to veterans, people with physical disabilities, individuals with autism, and even assistance dogs that work in hospitals and courthouses. 

The money we raise will go to the Prison PUP Program.  According to NEADS “90-95% of NEADS puppies are trained in 7 correctional facilities throughout New England. Our statistics show that, under the guidance of NEADS staff, inmates are able to provide consistent training at a high level simply because of the amount of time they are able to devote to the dogs. This enables us to place dogs faster with people in need.”  

For more information, please visit https://neads.org/training-placement/prison-pup-program/.

For a first person post about the program, please visit https://neads.org/prison-pup-program-a-win-win/.

Due to the generosity of our members, we have increased our goal!  To donate, go to https://support.neads.org/llne.  

The Service Committee

Update from the Access to Justice Committee

The Access to Justice committee has had a quiet winter, but information about Covid-related eviction protections and policies has been added to Legal Link for most of the New England States. Many thanks to A2J member Dana Lucisano for posting the info on Legal Link and to the LLNE Technology Committee for supporting her on that endeavor.

As we look to the rest of the year, we are exploring program proposals for public library conferences to continue to outreach to our public library colleagues and support them to provide legal information support to their patrons.

New LLNE Funtivity! Meet and Draw a Llama

It’s time for another free funtivity sponsored by LLNE! On Friday April 30 at 6pm EST let’s jet off to Australia to meet Cadbury the llama and friends. We’ll tour their paddock, then use our newfound knowledge as inspiration in an interactive drawing and animation lesson. Great for all ages (bring the family!) and all artistic skill levels.  To register and obtain the zoom details visit https://tinyurl.com/2e2bjaca. Please feel free to contact Kelly Johnson (johnskel@bu.edu) with any questions and for more information on this virtual event visit https://www.airbnb.com/experiences/1711473 .

Call for Nominations: Government Relations Committee Co-Chair

After many years of exceptional service as Co-Chair of LLNE’s Government Relations Committee, Anne McDonald will be stepping down at the end of her term on June 30, 2021.

LLNE President-Elect Mike VanderHeijden and the Executive Board are requesting nominations, including self-nominations, for the position of Co-Chair of LLNE’s Government Relations Committee (GRC).

GRC Co-Chairs work with GRC members from each New England state to monitor legislative and policy initiatives which are of interest to concerned law librarians and to report these developments to LLNE members and the AALL GRC. More information concerning the LLNE GRC, its charge, members, etc. can be found on the LLNE website at: https://llne.org/committees/government/ 

Please send nominations and self-nominations to President-Elect Mike VanderHeijden  (michael.vanderheijden@yale.edu) on or before May 15, 2021.