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November 9, 2010

Commission on Hispanic Legal Rights & Responsibilities to Hold First Hearing in Chicago


The _ Commission on Hispanic Legal Rights & Responsibilities will hold the first of four hearings to gauge the intensity of Latino civic participation and evaluate access to justice issues Nov. 12 at Loyola University Chicago School of Law.

Commission Advisory Committee members from Chicago and across the country will join commission Chair Cesar L. Alvarez, ABA President Stephen N. Zack and honorary co-chair of the commission, Gov. Bill Richardson, at this first hearing.

Expert witnesses will testify on the state of Latinos in the United States, with a focus on the Midwest as a microcosm of the national Latino experience.  Topics will include:

  • the housing crisis and how foreclosures and homelessness are affecting the Latino community,
  • the level of access for Latinos and Latinas to the U.S. justice system and
  • the criminalization of immigrants
  • Zack, Alvarez and Loyola Law School Dean David Yellen will give welcoming remarks
  • Gov. Richardson will present closing comments

ABA Commission on Hispanic Legal Rights & Responsibilities

Regional Hearing on the state of Latinos in the United States;
Topics, expert witnesses and Chicago participants/attendees include:

The State of Latinos in the U.S. & Midwest – Panel 1 (starts approx. 9:40 a.m.
Witness: Commissioner Janet Murguia, Executive Director, National Counsel of La Raza

Foreclosures & Homelessness in the Latino Community – Panel 2 (starts approx. 10:30 a.m.)
Witness: Judge Jesse G. Reyes, Circuit Court of Cook County, Chancery Division (Foreclosures)
Witness: Dulce Quintero, La Casa Norte (Homelessness)

The Criminalization of Immigrants – Panel 3 (starts approx 11:20 a.m.)
Witnesses pending confirmation

Access to the Courts & the Judiciary – Panel 4 (starts approx. 12:05 p.m.)
Witness: Anita Alvarez, Cook County State’s Attorney

Chicago leaders on Commission Advisory Committee who will attend:

  • Jesse H. Ruiz: partner at Drinker & Biddle and legal counsel to the Illinois senators and representatives who formed the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus and the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus Foundation.
  • Carlina Tapia-Ruano:  past president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, and the first Hispanic to hold that position.
  • Manny Flores:  Illinois Commerce Commission chairman

Friday, November 12
9 a.m. — 1:30 p.m.

Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Regents Hall, Lewis Tower, 16th Floor
111 East Pearson St., Chicago

This event is free and open to members of the press.

With nearly 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.