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LSU Law Clinic to Offer Legal Services to Sexual Assault Survivors
The East Baton Rouge Parish Council recognized the awarding of the grant at their meeting on October 8, 2014.  Pictured left to right: Morgan Lamandre, Director of Advocacy and Legal Services at STAR; Racheal Hebert, Executive Director of STAR; and Professor Robert Lancaster, Director, LSU Law Clinical Education Program Pictured left to right: Morgan Lamandre, Director of Advocacy and Legal Services at STAR; Racheal Hebert, Executive Director of STAR; and Professor Robert Lancaster, Director, LSU Law Clinical Education Program, attended the October 8 meeting of the East Baton Rouge Parish Metro-Council , where the grant was announced that will establish the Civil Legal Needs of Sexual Assault Survivors Law Clinic.

A new collaborative effort between the LSU Law Center and the Sexual Trauma Awareness and Response (STAR) organization will establish a new law clinic focused on civil needs of sexual assault survivors. The grant to the LSU Law Center was announced on October 6, and the new program will assist survivors in the Capital Region.

STAR received the funding via the Federal Office of Violence Against Women, and according to LSU Law Clinical Legal Education Director Robert Lancaster, the project will establish a Civil Legal Needs of Sexual Assault Survivors Law Clinic to train and educate student attorneys on working with sexual trauma survivors. The Legal Assistance for Victims (LAV) Program awarded STAR $500,000 over a three-year period to establish legal services to sexual assault survivors.

The project will provide holistic, free, competent legal services to survivors in matters resulting from the aftermath of sexual assault; the goal of the project is to enhance their safety, privacy, self-sufficiency and well-being. “The LSU Law Center looks forward to collaborating with STAR on this project,” says Lancaster. “The exposure law students will receive assisting survivors of sexual trauma will teach them first-hand how their work as lawyers can better people’s lives.”

According to representatives from STAR, “This is the first project of its kind in Louisiana intended to address survivors' unique civil legal needs as a result of sexual assault, including matters such as education, employment, housing, immigration, privacy, crime victims’ rights, and family law issues.”

Read the recent media coverage on the new clinic and grant funding via STAR:

Sexual trauma center in Baton Rouge wins federal grants

STAR awarded $1 million in grants to expand services

Sexual assault victims in Baton Rouge to get access to free, better legal services

Clinics & Externship Opportunities: Spring 2015 Notice to all 2L's and 3L's
SPRING SEMESTER – 2015

3L’s register October 13th and 2L’s register October 14th

Please note that the Clinics and Externships WILL NOT be requiring student applications for the Spring 2015 semester. Instead you will register for the Clinic or Externship of your choice when you register for other classes. So, we encourage you to register quickly in order to have a better chance of being admitted into the Clinic or Externship of your choice. There will be a limited number of spaces available in each course. If the course is over-enrolled, the professors have the option of interviewing students in order to make their selections. Also, remember that you can register for ONLY 1 Clinic or Externship during a semester. This means you have a choice of only one Clinic or one Externship. After you register for the Clinic or Externship of your choice you, will be notified of your acceptance as soon as possible.

Clinic available to 2L’s and 3L’s:

Civil Mediation Clinic (3 credits: LAW 5620) Learn mediation skills and mediate small claims cases at the Baton Rouge City Court.

Clinics limited to 3L’s pursuant to Louisiana Supreme Court Rule XX:

Juvenile Defense Clinic (5 credits: LAW 5624 (2cr.) and LAW 5858 (3cr.); NOTE you MUST register for both courses); Prerequisite: The Legal Profession (LAW 5721) Represent children charged with crimes in the East Baton Rouge Parish Juvenile Court.

Parole Assistance and Reentry Clinic (5 credits: LAW 5628 (2cr.) and LAW 5626 (3cr.): NOTE: You must register for both courses; Prerequisite: The Legal Profession (LAW 5721). Represent prisoners in parole and pardon cases before the Louisiana Board of Pardons, Committee on Parole.

Prosecution Clinic (3 credits: LAW 5627; Prerequisite: The Legal Profession (LAW 5721). Prosecute misdemeanor cases in one of the eight criminal divisions of the 19th Judicial District Court.

Social Security Disability Clinic (3 credits: LAW 5625; Prerequisite: The Legal Profession (LAW 5721). Represent homeless and disabled individuals before the Social Security Administration and other administrative agencies.

Externships available in Spring 2015 (All are available to 2L’s and 3L’s.)

Judicial Externship (3 credits: LAW 6003) Work in a judge’s chambers in the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, the Federal District Court, the Louisiana Supreme Court, a Louisiana Court of Appeals, or a State trial court.

Governmental Externship (3 credits: LAW 6004) Work in the legal office of a State, Federal, or Local governmental agency.

Public Interest / Not-for-Profit Externship (3 credits: LAW 6006) Work in a public interest law office or a public defender’s office.

Questions? Contact robert.lancaster@law.lsu.edu about Clinics and jeff.brooks@law.lsu.edu about Externships.

Civil Mediation Clinic Provides Opportunities to Develop Dispute Resolution and Negotiation Techniques
The Civil Mediation Clinic (CMC) is an intensive program that trains second and third year law students in dispute resolution techniques and negotiation theory in order for them to mediate live cases for members of the public. During the semester, the students must devote 150 hours of their time in class sessions, discussions, exercises, writing assignments, mediation simulations (three per student) and actual mediations at Baton Rouge City Court and the Clinic facilities. The mediation simulations are a minimum of one-hour long, are videotaped, uploaded to the Panapto video-editing software, and strenuously critiqued by the instructor, whose comments are displayed in “real time” with the video replay. The intensity of this work, especially early in the semester, cuts the learning curve and gives the students the opportunity to mediate live cases within four-to-five weeks of the beginning of the semester. Also, at least eleven (11) CMC students have contributed articles that have been published in the “Recent Developments in ADR” section of the Louisiana Bar Journal, with at least two more articles anticipated in the coming editions.

The CMC began working with the Baton Rouge City Court in the summer of 2011 to develop a court-connected mediation program (Mediation Program) for their Small Claims cases. Since that time the five judges of City Court have accommodated the Mediation Program by changing their respective docketing systems so that Small Claims cases are uniformly scheduled; by adopting standardized forms, including an Agreement to Mediate and Confidentiality form, a Mediation Agreement form, and a Mediation Case Report that documents the result of the mediation for the court and Clinic records; and by adopting a Policies & Procedures Manual on the Mediation Program that has been implemented by the judges’ respective staffs.. Most recently, we are exploring the possibility of the CMC conducting mediations of pro se cases that are above the $5,000.00 jurisdictional limit of Small Claims Court.

In the Fall Semester of 2012, the CMC began a collaboration with the Perry Damph Dispute Solutions firm that affords each of our students two (2) opportunities per semester to “shadow” live mediations involving attorneys and their clients that are mediated by professional mediators. This is an invaluable experience for the students. In the fall of 2013, the CMC was accepted as a referral source for the Baton Rouge Bar Association’s Thirst for Justice Program. That same semester, the CMC joined with the LSBA’s Alternative Dispute Resolution Section in conducting a School Outreach Program for the 8th grade students of a local school to celebrate National Mediation Week (the program was presented by students of the CMC again in October of 2014). Finally, in the summer of 2014, the CMC collaborated with a local attorney to have students conduct mediation conferences at the Clinic facilities for up to twelve (12) of his “small claims” cases per semester.

Since its inception, the Civil Mediation Clinic has conducted 51 mediation conferences and assisted parties in 38 of those to reach a voluntary agreement, resulting in a 75% resolution rate.

Paul M. Hebert Law Center   |    1 E. Campus Dr.   |    Louisiana State University   |    Baton Rouge, LA 70803   |   225/578-5292
jbgoode@law.lsu.edu