ALAA Roots — An Unofficial Site

September 28, 2007

2007.09.28: Justice for the Jena 6 meeting next Wed.

Filed under: Civil Rights,Criminal Justice,Drug Wars,Racism,Sentencing — nyclaw01 @ 10:14 am

From: Lucy Herschel
Sent: Friday, September 28, 2007 10:14 AM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Justice for the Jena 6 meeting next Wed.

Free the Jena 6 Forum & Fundraiser

Featuring:  Yusef Salaam, who was exonerated in the Central Park jogger case

Wednesday, October 3rd, 7pm, Hunter College, 68th St. & Lexington, Thomas Hunter Bldg, Rm. 105 For more info: or call 646-452-8662

Last fall, black students at a school in Jena, LA dared to sit under a tree which had been informally designated the “white” tree. White students retaliated by putting 3 nooses in the tree, and later a white student pulled a shotgun on three black students off campus; no criminal charges have been brought against any white students at any point.  When a another subsequent fight ensued between white & black students, the black students were charged with 2d-degree attempted murder – for a school fight – and originally faced 22 years in prison.   And while one was just recently exonerated, the legal battle continues as charges are anticipated to be re-filed in juvenile court.  Come out to this forum to help voice your support in fighting the re-emergence of Jim Crow justice.

September 27, 2007

2007.09.27: Re: Civil rights attorneys’ case – update (location info)

Filed under: Civil Rights,Criminal Justice,Racism — nyclaw01 @ 2:20 pm

From: Susan Morris
Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2007 2:20 PM
Subject: Re: Civil rights attorneys’ case – update (location info)

The Borough Hall Station of the 2, 3, 4, 5 and the Court Street Station of the M and R are all very close to the King’s County Criminal Courthouse at 120 Schermerhorn.

The 2/3/4/5 are the closest, though the two stations are connected in a typical underground maze.

The Jay Street Station (which is NOT connected underground to the Borough Hall Station!)  is also fairly close if the A, C, or F lines are more convenient to you.

Here are a couple of articles/links on the incident.

Evelyn Warren is Michael’s Law Partner, though the articles tend to identify her as his wife and skip over the fact that they are both partners in their law firm.

September 26, 2007

2007.09.26: 9/30 Victory & Fundraising Party for former death row prisoner Kenneth Foster!

Filed under: Civil Rights,Criminal Justice,Racism,Sentencing — nyclaw01 @ 11:06 am

From: Lucy Herschel
Sent: Wednesday, September 26, 2007 11:06 AM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: 9/30 Victory & Fundraising Party for former death row prisoner Kenneth Foster!

Many of you called/ e-mailed/ faxed Texas to stop this execution.  Now come to celebrate and to continue the fight!

See attached announcement (if you can’t see anything in the attachement, got to “View” on the menu bar and then click “HTML”)

September 18, 2007

2007.09.18: Legal Observer(s) for Jena 6 bus from Harlem needed

From: Susan Morris
Sent: Tuesday, September 18, 2007 2:35 PM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Legal Observer(s) for Jena 6 bus from Harlem needed

Legal support request for bus from Harlem to Jena 6 Rally

Organizers of a bus leaving Harlem early Wednesday morning have asked for a legal person

to accompany them to respond as legal people can to any efforts to delay their arrival for

the large rally on September 20th.  The bus will be returning on Saturday.  The bus ticket is $180, but very flexible depending on means (esp. law students).

If interested, please contact Bruce Bentley at (212) 815-7626 or at

The following two items:  update by Tulane Law Student Ben

VARADI and then some general information.

Not gonna sugar-coat it: we need more legal observers in Jena, Louisiana on September 20.  As you may know Mychal Bell’s sentence has been vacated but plans for the protest continue to grow.

Predictions vary wildly on how many demonstrators are going to show up, but we had 300 before it became a national news story, and this time there are bus caravans coming from all over.

Tulane/Loyola NLG chapters have been coordinating with the ACLU to provide observers, but as far as we know the total count is currently less than ten people… for the basically positive reason that most folks who care about the issue in the legal community are going to be waving signs and fists.

Still, Jena is a *tiny* community that *really* doesn’t want us there with a police force that’s never had to deal with crowd control (not counting holiday parades or whatever, I guess).

We need observers who are actual lawyers, we need enough people to have a presence in a potential crowd of hundreds to thousands, and honestly, we need help coordinating the whole thing.  We also need lawyers able to answer questions and help organize a response should there be arrests.

Jena Info:

Basic observer info:

This is the part of the email where I considered adding a one-sentence emotional plea, but you already know the story and what’s at stake.



September 11, 2007

2007.09.11: Thanks for your contribution

From: L.Antonia Codling []
Sent: Tuesday, September 11, 2007 10:00 PM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Thanks for your contribution

Dear All,

I want to thank everyone for their contribution in making the Day of Outrage a huge success!  A couple hundred demonstrators rallied and marched against Police Terrorism in the face of hundreds of NYPD officers.

Kamber Brisbane (HCLO), Michael Letwin (Bklyn-CDD) and Reginald Haley (Bklyn-CDD supervisor — we need more supervisors like Reggie!) served as legal observers, and I am sure the community felt safer with your presence.

Michael Letwin came prepared with the contacts to assist in expediiting any arrests, and the Union extended us the use of the office and its phones in the event anyone got arrested (fortunately there were no arrests!)  The Union also provided ALAA t-shirts to legal observers — Thank you, George & Debbie.

Noha Afra, Marisa Benton & Julie Fry (Bklyn-CDD) were ready, willing and able to staff the phone in the Union Office if if became necessary.

Thanks so much to Alejandro Beltran of the National Lawyers Guild who provided training to folks interested in serving as a legal observer.

The Union and the Community united — will never be defeated!





September 10, 2007

2007.09.10: Day of Outrage to Stop Police Terrorism and Antiwar Bulletin

From: Noha M. Arafa
Sent: Monday, September 10, 2007 2:00 PM
To: Graciela Lopez; 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS; James Bernal
Subject: Day of Outrage to Stop Police Terrorism and Antiwar Bulletin

*Union Free Speech Notice*

This message, like thousands of others that have been posted to the ALAA e-list (33 recent examples of which are listed below*) constitutes protected free speech, pursuant to Collective Bargaining Agreement, §§ 3.5 (“The expression of personal religious, political, social or economic beliefs of each and every attorney is fully guaranteed and will never constitute grounds for discharge or relief from an individual assignment unless, in either instance, it can be demonstrated that such expression has, or will, directly interfere(d) with, and detract from, representation of a Society client so as to render said representation less than at the highest level of competence and effectiveness.”) and 1.5 (“The Union will have reasonable use of the Society’s internal communication mechanisms.”).


1. 9/11: Day of Outrage to Stop Police Terrorism

2. 9/15: March on Washington

3. 9/22-9/29: Occupy the Occupiers in D.C.

4. Israel Boycott Campaign Momentum Grows


1.  9/11: Day of Outrage to Stop Police Terrorism


Day of Outrage NYC

Tuesday, September 11, 2007 at 3pm

Assemble: 33rd Street & 8th Avenue, New York City

Amid increased police abuse and harassment, Black and Latino community activists are calling for unified stiff resistance. On Tuesday, September 11, a day that New Yorkers recognize the reality of terrorism, community activists will hold a city wide Protest of Police Terrorism. Demonstrators plan to assemble in midtown Manhattan at 33rd Street and 8th Avenue at 3 PM for a “Day of Outrage against Police Terrorism.”

Organizers cite intensifying police racial profiling, brutality, harassment, stop and frisks, street sweeps, religious profiling, and murder on a national level. The recent police arrest and brutalizing of Attorneys Michael and Evelyn Warren in Brooklyn, as they attempted to help a handcuffed black man being “stomped and kicked” by police from the 77th precinct, galvanized a broad cross section of activists. Community mobilization activities are escalating.

An organizer passing out flyers on 125th Street declared “We have to resist this onslaught of police terrorism in our community. Enough is enough; there can be no more business as usual. We have to shut the city down!”

By Amadi Ajamu (917) 495-6979


2.  9/15: March on Washington



Mass March in Washington DC!

Gather at 12 noon at the White House

Join Iraq Veterans Against the War, Veterans for Peace, Camp Casey Peace Institute, the ANSWER Coalition, Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation, National Council of Arab-Americans, Grassroots America, Hip Hop Caucus, and thousands of others in Washington DC on September 15 for a huge antiwar protest timed to coincide with the report by General Petraeus on the “Surge” in Iraq.



3.  9/22-9/29: Occupy the Occupiers in D.C.

SEPT 29:

National March on Washington

SEPT 22-29:

Encampment in Front of Congress to STOP the War

Troops Out Now!

Impeach Bush & Cheney for War Crimes!

End All Occupations — from Iraq to Palestine to Haiti to the Philippines!

Same Struggle Same Fight!

Let’s act in unity with many movements and struggles raising demands including:

* No War against Iran

* End all occupations now – from Iraq to Palestine, the Philippines, Haiti, Puerto Rico, and Afghanistan

* Support The Right to Return – from Palestine to New Orleans

* No to U.S. intervention – Hands off Cuba, Venezuela, Colombia, Zimbabwe, and the Sudan

* Stop the raids against immigrant workers — Full rights for undocumented workers

* Justice for Katrina survivors – End racist police terror – Stop the war against Muslims

* Free Mumia Abu-Jamal, Leonard Peltier, the Cuban Five, and all political prisoners

* Money for health care, jobs and education, not endless war



4. Israel Boycott Campaign Momentum Grows

Zmag, August 13, 2007

Pappe argues that a single democratic state, to which the Palestinian refugees are granted the right to return, is the only feasible and just solution, and that the BDS campaign is a crucial part of achieving this.

The campaign to isolate Israel through boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) has taken meaningful steps forward in the past few months, with major trade unions in Britain, Ireland, South Africa and Canada declaring their support for an international boycott.

[Full text: ]


*LAS Free Speech.  Examples during the past week include the following 33 messages in the last two weeks alone, posted to the LAS e-lists shown below: [Redacted]

September 5, 2007

2007.09.05: Re: ALAA/1199 at West Indian Day Parade

Filed under: Civil Rights,Criminal Justice,Drug Wars,Racism — nyclaw01 @ 9:07 am

From: Noha M. Arafa
Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2007 9:07 AM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Re: ALAA/1199 at West Indian Day Parade

The parade was in fact a great success.  We handed out 2,000 Know Your Rights pamphlets re encounters with the police.  I think we easily could have handed out more.  People were very receptive.  And we made a lot of important contacts as well.

This could not have been done without the hard work, enthusiasm and dedication of the following people:  Nicole Rochat, Julie Fry, Laurie Dick, Joanna Hinkley, Ron Schneider, Margaret McClean, Magnus Mkuro, Shannon Stallings, Courtney Bryan, Rebecca Turner, Ivan Pantoja, Allison Jordan and Andrea Gordon.   I want to take this time to thank all of them.


September 4, 2007

2007.09.04: Support 2-day Taxi Workers Strike September 5 – 6

Filed under: Labor Solidarity,Uncategorized — nyclaw01 @ 11:15 am

From: Michael Letwin
Sent: Tuesday, September 04, 2007 8:28 PM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Support 2-day Taxi Workers Strike September 5 – 6 – Volunteer & spread the word

From: Ngo Thanh Nhan <>
Date: Tue, 4 Sep 2007 16:27:45 -0400

Dear Friends,

The NY and Philadelphia taxi strike is on!

New York City’s taxi workers will be going on strike tomorrow and Thursday to stop GPS spyware and protect their dignity, civil liberties and right to maintain their income. Lead by their union, the New York Taxi Workers Alliance (a member of the NYC Central Labor Council) with over 10,000 members, a victory for these workers will be a victory for all workers and passengers in NYC!

Volunteers are needed to leaflet and do other tasks. Please distribute the e-leaflet below and call 212-627-5248 to help! Thank you.

STOP GPS SPYWARE IN TAXIS! SUPPORT DRIVERS’ AND PASSENGERS RIGHTS! The Taxi & Limousine Commission wants to force cab drivers to install GPS technology in all taxis. GPS is a bad deal for riders and for drivers:

– GPS WILL NOT give drivers navigation software or online maps – GPS lets private companies track drivers’ AND passengers’ every move – GPS violates all our civil liberties and right to privacy – GPS will subject you to annoying broadcast ads during your ride – GPS will cause the meter to shut down if the technology fails – GPS failure will force you to interrupt your ride and hail another cab – Drivers will lose days of income while waiting for GPS repairs – Drivers’ income will be hurt by higher lease rates because of GPS


You can help by: Calling the Taxi Workers Alliance – 212-627-5248 and volunteering to help!

September 2, 2007

2007.09.02: Legal Observer Meeting/Training – Thursday, Sept. 6, 2007 @ 6:00 & 7:00 p.m.

Filed under: Civil Liberties,Civil Rights,Criminal Justice,Police Abuse,Racism — nyclaw01 @ 8:34 am

From: L.Antonia Codling
Sent: Sunday, September 02, 2007 8:34 PM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Legal Observer Meeting/Training – Thursday, Sept. 6, 2007 @ 6:00 & 7:00 p.m.

The National Lawyer’s Guild has agreed to provide training to Legal Aid staff who wish to serve as legal observers for protests/demonstrations in New York City.  The training will be held at ALAA headquarters (see address below) on Thursday, September 6, 2007 @ 7:00 p.m.  Kindly RSVP if you plan to attend.

In addition, there will be a meeting of legal observers who wish to serve for the 9/11 Day of Outrage on Thursday, September 6, 2007 @ 6:00 p.m. at ALAA headquarters.  Please contact me if you wish to serve as a legal observer for the 9/11 Day of Outrage but are unable to attend this meeting,

ALAA headquarters is located at 568 Broadway, 7th Floor, near the corner of Prince Street.  Travel is available by train via 6, B, F, N & R.  Parking is available after 6:00 p.m.



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