On Sunday, October 28th, members of the LLNE A2J Committee and the LLNE Service Committee presented at the New England Library Association Conference (NELA) in Warwick, RI. The presentation titled “Law, Technology, and Access to Justice” discussed the access to justice gap in both New England and the United States and how technology is being developed to help bridge the gap. The presenters showcased a variety of current and upcoming technologies that are focused on helping self-represented litigants prepare for court, such as RePresent, Objection! Your Honor, and the Odyssey Guide and File. The session also tackled ethical concerns and the unauthorized practice of law with presenters role-playing common legal reference scenarios to show setting boundaries with patrons. Finally, and most importantly, the presenters discussed LLNE’s Legal Link resource for providing legal reference and referrals. The session was well-received and the attendees were engaged with the material. The slides from the session have been uploaded and shared on the NELA website.
By Mike VanderHeijden
For those of you interested in Access to Justice, SNELLA’s Spring Meeting is focused on A2J issues in Connecticut. Please see details, below.
The Southern New England Law Libraries Association (SNELLA) will host our Spring Meeting at UCONN Law’s campus on Tuesday, May 8, 2018. The day promises to be an great day of practical information about legal services to the public in Connecticut. If you aren’t a member and are interested in joining or you have any questions you talk to me or you can fill out the form here.
A2J: Law Libraries and Service to the Public
Tuesday, May 8, 2018 | 9:30-2:30
UConn Law School, Starr Reading Room, 55 Elizabeth Street, Hartford, CT 06105
Register here by May 1, 2018
$25 for Members | $30 for Non-Members
9:30-10:15: Registration, Continental Breakfast, & Welcoming Remarks
10:15-11:15: A2J in the Courts: Connecticut Court Service Centers. Presenters, Desiree Biggs, manager Court Service Center in Hartford & Alexandra Gillett, Program Manager for the Court Service Center Program.
11:30-12:30: A2J Education: Law libraries and public librarians. Presenters, Anne Rajotte, Head of Reference Services, University of Connecticut School of Law & Christopher Roy, Law Librarian II, Connecticut Judicial Branch Law Library at New Britain.
1:30-2:30: A2J in Public Libraries: Redefining Access to Legal Assistance for Immigrants. Presenters from The American Place Adult Education & Immigration Services at the Hartford Public Library
2:30: Closing remarks and tour
For directions and maps, see https://www.law.uconn.edu/about/maps-directions. Please park in Lot B.
By Michael VanderHeijden
I’m writing to relay a change to the LLNE Service Committee approved by a vote of the attending members at the Fall meeting in Salem, MA.
In an effort to more effectively pursue two divergent initiatives (service projects and Legal Link), LLNE’s Service Committee has become two committees. The Service Committee will remain focused on planning and executing the public service projects associated with LLNE’s Fall and Spring meetings. A new Access to Justice (A2J) Committee has been created to continue the work on Legal Link and to pursue projects promoting access to and understanding of legal information.
The committee’s charge is copied, below.
Jessica Dziedzic Almeida, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Law School, is chairing the Service Committee. If you’d like to volunteer for the Service Committee, please contact Jessica at firstname.lastname@example.org. Mike VanderHeijden, Yale Law School, is chairing the A2J Committee.
Members of the A2J Committee:
Sherry Xin Chen (Boston College School of Law);
Nicole Dyszlewski (Roger Williams University School of Law);
Suzanne Hoey (Barnstable Law Library);
Jessica Pisano Jones (Social Law Library);
Natalia May (Vermont Law School);
Sara McMahon (Western New England School of Law);
Misty Peltz-Steele (University of Massachusetts School of Law);
Jennifer Robble (Boston University School of Law)
Mike VanderHeijden (Yale Law School)
Access to Justice Committee Charge:
- The Access to Justice Committee shall consist of a chair, or co-chairs, and such additional members as the President shall designate.
- Recognizing the acute need in many New England communities for access to legal information and recognizing the unique training, expertise, and resources of New England’s law librarians, the Access to Justice Committee shall partner with public librarians, court personnel and others to leverage collections, professional knowledge and skills to promote access to justice through greater understanding and availability of legal information.
- Further recognizing that there are many as-yet unidentified opportunities to partner with Access to Justice communities of interest, the Committee shall not limit itself to familiar librarian roles. Rather, the Committee shall remain open to new and alternative modes and methods of supporting the Access to Justice movement.