Friday, May 21, 2010

Street Law Classes Launch Legal Training Program

From our friends at Voice Of The Ex-offender (V.O.T.E.):
Earlier this year VOTE began its Street Law series designed to educate people of all ages about their constitutional rights in the criminal justice system. The Street Law Class is broken up into three lessons and covers 4th Amendment protections against unreasonable search and seizure, explaining the difference between what the police are supposed to do by law and what they usually do in everyday routine encounters. The instructors, all Formerly Incarcerated Persons with decades of legal knowledge, cover Terry Stops, Miranda Rights and Probable Cause, among other topics. Participants also learn the do’s and don’ts of police encounters and the basics of court proceedings.

The Street Law Class is the first part of VOTE’s 3 part Legal Training Program. In June, VOTE will host a Legal Research Class that instructs participants in how to procure information about an individual’s case from Docket Master, how to read court documents and how to use a law library. This class is not only designed to help individuals research legal issues that are directly impacting them, but also how to use these research skills to help fellow members of their community such as family, neighbors and friends. The Legal Research Class will be held in June during 1 to 2.

The Legal Research Class is a pre-requisite for V.O.T.E.’s Paralegal Training Program which is slated to begin in July. This 10 week course will be intensive job training specifically for FIPs or their immediate family members. Participants will be trained and mentored by FIPs who work in the legal field on reading legal documents, brief writing, in-depth legal research and other necessary skills for a successful career as a paralegal. VOTE is currently recruiting attorneys who will commit to contracting with the graduates of the Paralegal Training Program.

For more information on these classes, or to sign up, contact VOTE at (504) 943-1901.

VOTE is an organization dedicated to building the political power of people most impacted by the criminal justice system, especially formerly incarcerated persons (FIPs,) their families and loved ones. Through leadership development, community education and voter mobilization, VOTE will ensure that our constituents are at the center of transforming the criminal justice system.

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