<![CDATA[Reentry Legal Clinic - home]]>Tue, 17 Nov 2015 19:28:04 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Roe v. Intellicorp]]>Thu, 12 Jun 2014 19:45:28 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/roe-v-intellicorpBack in 2011, a client came through the clinic to expunge her record.  We provided her with the same post-clinic consultation to ensure that her rights are protected.  And so we discovered that one of the largest background check companies, Intellicorp Records Inc., sold instant background check reports--thereby reporting expunged records.

The case was filed as a nationwide class action and was settled for $18.6 million, sending a large ripple through the background check industry.  Last week, the court entered the final order approving the settlement--and Intellicorp Records, Inc. no longer sells unverified, instant background check reports.  It's a confirmation of this clinic's core strategy.
<![CDATA[All of Us or None-Long Beach]]>Fri, 09 May 2014 07:26:46 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/all-of-us-or-none-long-beachJust as this Clinic operates in both Los Angeles and Long Beach, there are 2 chapters of AOUON in LA County: AOUON-LA and AOUON-LB.  AOUON-LA is much older and has more members.  And this round of Ban the Box campaign started in LA months earlier.  Yet, with a smaller membership and less history, AOUON-LB is somehow managing to move the campaign faster than AOUON-LA.  There's nothing like a little friendly competition!  Here are Ban the Box outreach flyers (in English and Spanish) for AOUON-LB.]]><![CDATA[Ban the Box campaign & Letter-writing Drive]]>Mon, 24 Mar 2014 02:44:39 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/ban-the-box-campaign-letter-writing-driveBack in 2006, All of Us or None-Los Angeles (AOUON-LA) introduced Ban the Box in Southern California, which passed in Carson and Compton--but not in Los Angeles City or County.  At the end of last year, AOUON-LA members got together and came up with what turned out to be the most comprehensive and progressive version of Ban the Box anywhere in the nation to date.  It's that version that AOUON-LA and AOUON-Long Beach (AOUON-LB) are now pushing.

In support, this clinic started collecting letters from individual clients who've experienced discrimination based on their criminal record.  We ask that you support Ban the Box in Southern California by writing a letter yourself and asking your friends/family to write one too.  Here's a sample letter with instructions.]]>
<![CDATA[the next five years]]>Fri, 08 Nov 2013 03:43:35 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/the-next-five-yearsThe very first clinic was in November 2007.  So the upcoming clinic on November 9th is its 5th year anniversary--and a fitting time for some reflection.  

From the beginning of the clinic, we had 3 goals: (1) provide direct service to individuals with criminal records; (2) change private and public policies that adversely affect them (policy advocacy); and (3) empower them to challenge widespread biases and barriers on their own (community organizing). While we've had a number of "victories" for the first two, we did not do so well with the third, despite our belief that the organizing and empowerment of this community is by far the most important of the three goals.  So, since the beginning of 2013, we've been engaged in a long internal discussion about how we can improve.

If you've been coming to the clinic, you may notice that we've begun to "pivot" the clinic's operation to do more community organizing.  Changes will continue over the coming months.  Hopefully, the next five years will see the clinic more actively supporting a growing movement against the regime of mass incarceration.]]>
<![CDATA[joint suspension and 1203.4]]>Thu, 05 Sep 2013 21:14:45 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/joint-suspension-and-12034We often see superior court judges who believe that "joint suspension" makes 1203.4 ineligible.  (Joint suspension refers to the grant of a probation after suspension of execution of a prison sentence.)  One of our clinic clients was erroneously denied a 1203.4 petition on this basis back in 2012.  This June, the 2nd Appellate District reversed the trial court's ruling and remanded the case.

CT Turney wrote the bulk of the opening brief but couldn't make it to the oral argument.  I did for her (and took the credit for her excellent work).  At the hearing, the bench was sympathetic to my argument that the case should be published to give a clear guidance to judges, given that most 1203.4 petitions are filed by self-represented petitioners.  So it's published.]]>
<![CDATA[Title VII]]>Thu, 05 Sep 2013 21:02:33 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/title-viiA couple of months ago, one of the clinic's clients, represented by A New Way of Life Reentry Project, settled his Title VII claim against a large trucking company.  The case was filed back in 2009, and the EEOC issued a cause finding back in September 2012.  The company's policy has been revised since the filing of the Title VII charge and will be reviewed by the EEOC for 5 years.  The settlement affects up to 14,000 people nationwide.  And it wouldn't have been possible without the work of the clinic volunteers, so thank you all!]]><![CDATA[frustration and an opportunity for strateigic appeal]]>Mon, 11 Mar 2013 23:24:46 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/frustration-and-an-opportunity-for-strateigic-appealI was in a foul, foul mood, but now I am not.  Let me explain.

When a defendant does not pay all fines and fees, the court can (and often does) refer the remaining balance to a collection agency.  And the court will often (not always) refuse to set aside the conviction under 1203.4 until all the balance is paid off.  It's ass-backward to insist that the petitioner pay the money first, when he can't pay because he's unemployed.  And he's unemployed because of his conviction, which he needs to set aside so he can find a job.  And round and round we go.  But that's not (the only reason) why I was in a foul, foul mood today.

I have a client who is willing to pay--despite the fact that he's been homeless for more than a decade.  The court previously denied his petition because he didn't pay all fines.  The problem here is that the collection agency, GC Services, cannot locate his account.  The court record shows that the fines were referred to GC Services, and the court previously denied his 1203.4 petition because of it.  But GC Services can't find his account, so round and round we go.  I talked to 5 different individuals at GCS and got dropped from the call twice--before finally talking to one of their "supervisors" with a different phone number.

But then it hit me.  These are good facts to challenge (some) courts' absolute refusal to exercise their discretion to grant a 1203.4 petition with or without the full payment of all fines and fees.  In fact, the facts don't get much better than this.  So is this an opportunity for strategic appeal?

UPDATE (9/5/2013): The court granted the petition after being told what was going on.  No appeal.]]>
<![CDATA[sealing and destruction of marijuana records in California]]>Tue, 05 Mar 2013 17:32:05 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/sealing-and-destruction-of-marijuana-records-in-californiaUnder California Health & Safety Code § 11361.5, minor marijuana arrests and convictions are supposed to be sealed and destroyed by the court and other agencies after 2 years of the arrest without a conviction or 2 years after the conviction. California Health & Safety Code § 11361.7 tracks § 11361.5 and states that such records "shall not be considered to be accurate, relevant, timely, or complete for any purposes." This is as good as it gets when it comes to "expungement" of conviction records in California--with the possible exception of deferred entry of judgment.

As a way of reducing court costs, however, a proposal is being made to remove infraction marijuana convictions (under California Health & Safety Code § 11357(b))  from the protection of these laws, thereby allegedly “saving” the Court’s staff from having to spend time locating and destroying these infractions for simple possession. And it's done via a trailer bill to the next year's budget. See attached. Of course, one can easily cut even more costs by de-criminalizing possession of a small quantity of marijuana in the first place. <sarcasm>But, no, that obviously is not the right thing to do.</sarcasm>
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<![CDATA[San Diego Clean Slate Clinic]]>Tue, 26 Feb 2013 00:54:52 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/san-diego-clean-slate-clinicIn April 2012, Keiara Auzenne, a former co-chair of Reentry Legal Clinic, founded a self-help clinic in San Diego, called "San Diego Clean Slate Clinic," along with a long-time San Diego deputy public defender, Susan Clemens.  SDCLC is held on the 1st Saturday of each month.  Generally, South Metro Career Center hosts the clinic at 4398 Imperial Ave., San Diego, CA 92113, although, as I understand it, the intent is to visit other places in San Diego County from time to time.  So, in February, they were in Vista but are back in San Diego through August.]]><![CDATA[clinic location to alternate between South Central LA and Long Beach]]>Mon, 25 Feb 2013 22:46:38 GMThttp://www.reentrylegalclinic.org/home/clinic-location-to-alternate-between-south-central-la-and-long-beachWe saw a lot of demand in Long Beach when we held a couple of pilot clinics there.  As a result, the Clinic decided to alternate the clinic location between our usual location in Watts and the new location in Long Beach.  (The flyer is attached at the end of this post.)

Watts Clinic: February, April, June, August, October & December
WLCAC Bernice Watkins Vision Complex
10957 S. Central Ave., Los Angeles, 90059

Long Beach Clinic: January, March, May, July, September & November
Centro C.H.A., Center for Working Families
1900 S. Atlantic Ave., Long Beach, 90806

And we'd like to take this opportunity to again thank our volunteers for making this Clinic one of the largest clinics of its kind in California!
Reentry Legal Clinic flyer (alternating locations)
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