ABA Midyear Meeting Daily Advisory for Feb. 14 – 16

BOSTON, Feb. 13, 2009 – Access to justice for persons involved in immigration enforcement actions, clarifying the legal rights of members of the military, and the expanded use of mediation in criminal cases are among the topics that will be debated when the _’s policy-making House of Delegates meets on Feb. 16.
Also on Monday, ABA President H. Thomas Wells Jr. will hold an 8:30 a.m. press availability at the Hynes Convention Center, Room 301, Level 3.
The ABA’s Midyear Meeting began on Feb. 11 and will wrap up Feb. 17. In addition to the debate by the House of Delegates on Monday, an array of programs focusing on hot issues of the day including the housing crisis, immigration and health care are being held as part of the meeting. On Saturday, several programs will focus on intellectual property, including one that will examine intellectual property privacy in the post-9/11 digital world. 
Click here to see the full Midyear Meeting program agenda. Highlights of programs during Saturday and Monday’s sessions are listed below.
“IP Privacy in the Digital World of the Internet, E-Commerce and Post 9/11 America”
10:15 – 11:45 a.m.
Hynes Convention Center, Level 2, Room 208
“Spirit of Excellence Awards”
The Spirit of Excellence Award celebrates the achievements of diverse lawyers who contribute to the legal profession and society. Awards are presented to lawyers who excel in their professional settings; who personify excellence on the national, state or local level; and who have demonstrated a commitment to racial and ethnic diversity in the legal profession.  This year’s recipients include Charles J. Ogletree Jr., Jesse Climenko Professor of Law, Harvard Law School; Richard A. Soden, of counsel, Goodwin Procter LLP, Boston; Julius L. Chambers, civil rights lawyer and educator, Ferguson Stein Chambers Gresham and Sumter P.A., Charlotte, N.C.; Sen. Colleen Hanabusa, Senate president, Hawaii State Legislature, Honolulu; Joan Mei Haratani, partner, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, San Francisco; Chief Justice Daniel Sosa Jr. (Ret.), Supreme Court of the State of New Mexico, Las Cruces, N.M.; and William A. Von Hoene Jr., executive vice president and general counsel, Exelon Corporation, Chicago.
Noon – 2 p.m.
Sheraton Boston, 2nd Level, Grand/Independence Ballrooms
“IP Protection of Computer Software: The State of Copyright, Patent and License Protection for Computer Programs”
1:45 – 3:15 p.m.
Hynes Convention Center, Level 2, Room 208
“HIV and the Rule of Law: A Legal Roadmap for a New Administration”
Much has been done in the last eight years to address the global HIV/AIDS crisis. Yet a crisis it remains, and while billions of dollars have rightly been allocated to address the pandemic abroad, federal funds for the domestic epidemic have been flat or even cut, with potentially devastating consequences.  This program will examine the domestic and international legal dimensions of HIV/AIDS and the key legal elements that must be part of the new administration’s approach. 2:30 – 4 p.m.
Hynes Convention Center, Level 3, Room 309
The 555-member House of Delegates will meet in the Ballroom, Level 3 of the Hynes Convention Center at 8:30 a.m. to consider policy recommendations and vote on resolutions.  For details of the proposals for debate and vote when the House meets, click here.  Among the topics: 
10A Recommend the procedural framework for Guantanamo detainees be determined by federal district courts, not Congress, and the courts should grant detainees all rights of habeas petitioners
101B Urge the expanded use of mediation to resolve criminal matters prior to filing criminal cases.
101C Support measures to ensure due process and access to justice for persons involved in immigration enforcement actions
103 Urge law firms and other law organizations to adopt the ABA-EPA Law Office Climate Challenge
108 Encourage legislation enabling a lawful permanent resident in the United States to sponsor for permanent residence a same-sex non-citizen with whom the sponsor shares an interdependent, committed relationship
109 Amend Model Rule 1.10 to permit screening of lateral-hire lawyers so that conflicts-of-interest are not imputed to other lawyers in the new firm
110 Amend Model Rule 1.10 to permit certain lawyers to move to an adversary law firm without client consent, if lawyers are screened
114 Urge amending the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act to clarify the rights of servicemembers or their dependents to sue for civil enforcement of rights under the act
Also for consideration is a series of proposals (107A – G) that represent a comprehensive set of integrated and highly interdependent measures to reduce litigation after catastrophes, reduce risk of loss from future catastrophe and aid potential victims of disasters to come.
In addition, during the House meeting on Presidents’ Day, Walter Dellinger, Douglas B. Maggs Professor of Law, Duke University, will speak on “Abraham Lincoln as a Lawyer.”
“Renewed Hope: Human Rights and the New Administration”
John Shattuck, CEO, John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, and assistant secretary of state for democracy, human rights and labor under President Bill Clinton, will address how President Barack Obama can work to address concerns around the world of this nation’s commitment to human rights and the rule of law.
Noon – 1:30 p.m.
Sheraton Boston Hotel, Back Bay Ballroom D
Accredited reporters are welcome to attend and cover all sessions for free.  A press room for working journalists will be at the Hynes Convention Center, Exhibit Hall D, starting at 8 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 12, and will remain open for on-site media registration daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.  The press room will close one hour after the adjournment of the ABA House of Delegates.  For more information, please contact the press room at 617-954-2896, or call the ABA Division for Media Relations and Communication Services at 312-988-6139 or 202-.  Credential guidelines are at www.abanews.org/credentials.html. 
With more than 400,000 members, the _ is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world.  As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.