Gender and the Law Prof Blog

Editor: Tracy A. Thomas
University of Akron School of Law

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Study Shows Ending Sexual Harassment Requires Change in Organizational Climate, not Merely Ousting "Bad Men"

Want to End Sexual Harassment? Landmark Study Finds Ousting "Bad Men" Isn't Enough

When sexual harassment happens, it’s easy ― and not wrong ― to blame individual perpetrators, i.e., the “bad men.” And over the past couple of years, lots of men have been fired, demoted, arrested and publicly shamed for various acts of sexual misconduct.


But a major study from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine outlines a more comprehensive way of looking at sexual harassment within organizations and identifies the strongest predictor of such behavior. Surprisingly, it has little to do with individual perpetrators.


The study finds that the strongest, most potent predictor of sexual harassment is essentially the culture of the company ― what the researchers call “organizational climate.” 


If employees believe that their organization takes harassment seriously, then harassment is less likely to happen, according to the 311-page report released Tuesday. That faith in fair treatment acts as a deterrent against bad actors and encourages workers to speak up about harassment ― key to keeping bad behavior at bay.  


“It’s not about rooting out the bad apples; we need to focus on the whole barrel,” said Lilia Cortina, a professor of psychology and women’s studies at the University of Michigan and one of 21 experts who authored the report. “When organizations really cultivate a climate that makes clear it will not tolerate sex harassment, employees are much less likely to engage in sexual harassment,” she said.

January 15, 2019 in Business, Equal Employment | Permalink | Comments (0)

Examining the Oral Arguments in Roe v. Wade and How They Shaped Feminist Legal Theory

Catherine Martin Christopher, Nevertheless She Persisted: Comparing Roe v. Wade's Two Oral Arguments, 49 Seton Hall L. Rev. 307 (2018).

There is a longstanding and popular sentiment in the legal profession that oral arguments do not really matter; rather, everything rides on the written briefs. This Article takes that old adage head on, and does so through analysis of one of the most controversial cases ever decided by the United States Supreme Court: Roe v. Wade. It is a little-known fact that Roe was argued before the Court not once, but twice, which presents a unique opportunity to consider the place and power of oral arguments in Supreme Court jurisprudence.

This Article offers a comprehensive analysis and critique of the two oral arguments in Roe. The Article first analyzes the oral arguments pragmatically, undertaking a scholarly investigation of the arguments to investigate their impact on the majority opinion. Next, the Article proceeds theoretically, engaging in a feminist legal theory analysis to assess how the Roe arguments were both a product of their time and shaped feminist legal theory going forward.

January 15, 2019 in Abortion, Courts, SCOTUS, Theory | Permalink | Comments (0)

Duke's Experience with Sexual Assault Policies Still Leaves Questions and Concerns

Stung By Scandal, Duke U Retooled its Sexual-Assault Policies. Here's Why It's Still Falling Short.

Behind the bar at Shooters II Saloon, a poster declares: "Innocent From the Beginning! Innocent Now!! Innocent Forever!!!"


Signed by Duke University’s 2006 men’s lacrosse team, the poster reflects the strong emotions and hints at the deep scars that remain from a scandal that cast a harsh national spotlight on the university more than a decade ago, when several players were falsely accused of rape.


Hoping to recast its reputation in the aftermath, Duke’s president at the time, Richard H. Brodhead, said it was "going over all our procedures to see what we can learn from our experience."


Duke revised its sexual-assault policies and spent large sums on prevention. Four years ago, the university hired a Title IX director who’d spent nearly two decades working in the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. Since 2014, it has filled eight new positions focusing on sexual assault.


By most measures, Duke professionalized its sexual-assault investigations. In college and university legal circles, it gained a reputation as "cutting edge" in the field of Title IX, the federal law governing those cases, according to Peter F. Lake, director of the Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy at Stetson University.


Students took note of the university’s new stance. A former student who founded a group called Duke Students Against Gender Violence recalled that a longtime student-­affairs vice president, Larry Moneta, had told her, "You tell me how much you need, and I’ll write a check."


And yet, despite all that has changed at Duke, despite its revamped policies and deep pockets, the university faces a credibility problem on sexual assault. A Duke student survey, released in 2017, showed that most female undergraduates don’t trust the administration to hold rapists accountable. Only 35 percent of them said the university properly investigates sexual assault. Only about a third believed that "students found responsible for sexual assault are punished appropriately."


But sometimes Duke makes it harder. In the years since the lacrosse case, Duke has been accused in multiple sexual-assault investigations of violating its own procedural rules — or being more concerned with protecting its reputation than protecting students. A few cases have led to lawsuits by students who have been victims of sexual assault, or have been accused of it. Duke’s student newspaper has repeatedly called out the university for procedural missteps.


The Chronicle identified several cases with significant red flags. Sexual-assault cases are tricky — at colleges nationwide they are a legal and ethical minefield. But Duke’s recent history prompts some uncomfortable questions: Has the university really turned a corner on the issue? And if it hasn’t, even after significant effort and spending, what realistic chance does the rest of higher education have?

January 15, 2019 in Education, Violence Against Women | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, January 14, 2019

5 Books to Help Talk About Rape Culture

Wash Post, Laurie Halse Anderson Recommends Five Books to Help Talk About Rape Culture

“The Round House,” by Louise Erdrich (Harper)

Erdrich’s 2012 novel explores the complicated search for justice and the roots of violence after a sexual assault on a reservation in North Dakota. This powerful National Book Award winner will linger in your heart.


“Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture,”edited by Roxane Gay (Harper)

These devastating personal essays from survivors of sexual violence cover a range of topics connected to rape culture. The result is both eye-opening and insightful.


“The Way I Used to Be,” by Amber Smith (Margaret K. McElderry Books)

This young adult novel is an unflinching look at the struggles of a rape victim to process her trauma and find the strength to rebuild her life.


“Queering Sexual Violence: Radical Voices from Within the Anti-Violence Movement,” edited by Jennifer Patterson (Riverdale Avenue Books)

This is an important collection that expands traditional conversations about sexual violence to include victims and survivors who are queer, transgender and gender nonconforming.


“Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town,” by Jon Krakauer (Doubleday)

Krakauer takes a deep dive into the culture of sexual violence that permeates college campuses and the daunting challenges faced by victims who seek justice.

January 14, 2019 in Books, Violence Against Women | Permalink | Comments (0)

SCOTUS Grants Cert in Title VII Exhaustion of Remedies Case to Resolve Circuit Split

SCOTUSBlog, Fort Bend County v. Davis

Whether Title VII’s administrative-exhaustion requirement is a jurisdictional prerequisite to suit, as three circuits have held, or a waivable claim-processing rule, as eight circuits have held.

5th Circuit Decision Below at Justia: Davis v. Fort Bend County (5th Cir. 2018)

Davis filed a complaint with the Fort Bend County Human Resources Department alleging that a director had sexually harassed and assaulted her. An investigation led to the director’s resignation. According to Davis, her supervisor retaliated because the director was a personal friend of Davis's supervisor. Davis informed her supervisor that she could not work one specific Sunday because she had a "commitment” to attend a special church service. Her supervisor did not approve the absence. Davis attended the service and did not report to work. Fort Bend terminated her employment. Davis filed a charge with the Texas Workforce Commission then filed suit under Title VII. The Fifth Circuit affirmed summary judgment on her retaliation claim but reversed on her religious discrimination claim, finding genuine disputes of material fact as to whether Davis held a bona fide religious belief that she needed to attend the service and Fort Bend would have suffered an undue hardship in accommodating Davis’s religious observance. The Supreme Court denied Fort Bend’s petition for certiorari. On remand, Fort Bend argued—for the first time— that Davis had failed to exhaust her administrative remedies. Holding that administrative exhaustion is a jurisdictional prerequisite in Title VII cases, the district court found Davis’s contention that Fort Bend had waived this argument “irrelevant.” The Fifth Circuit again reversed. Title VII’s administrative exhaustion requirement is not a jurisdictional bar but rather a prudential prerequisite and Fort Bend forfeited the argument.


January 14, 2019 in Equal Employment, SCOTUS | Permalink | Comments (0)

Harvard Study Shows Bias Drops Dramatically for Sexual Orientation and Race Since 2007

Study: Bias Drops Dramatically for Sexual Orientation and Race since 2007

New research from Harvard University finds that Americans' unconscious bias on the basis of sexual orientation and race dropped dramatically over a decade.


The study in the journal Psychological Science looks at more than 4 million online tests for implicit bias — bias people aren't aware of — taken from 2007 to the end of 2016.

It finds that attitudes about sexual orientation changed the fastest, says lead author Tessa Charlesworth: "The most striking finding is that sexuality attitudes have changed toward neutrality, toward less bias, by as much as 33 percent on implicit measures," and by 49 percent on explicit measures — people's reports about their own attitudes.

The study also found a big drop in racial bias — but a rise in bias against people based on body weight.

And it showed that implicit biases, initially thought to be so deep-seated that they were immutable, can change over time, and toward multiple groups of people.


January 14, 2019 in Gender, LGBT, Pop Culture, Race | Permalink | Comments (0)

Judge Grants Preliminary Injunction Blocking Trump Administration's Roll Back of Birth Control Mandate

Judge Blocks Trump's Attempt to Roll Back Birth Control Mandate

A federal judge on Sunday granted a request by more than a dozen states to temporarily block the Trump administration from putting into effect new rules that would make it easier for employers to deny women health insurance coverage for contraceptives.


Contraception is covered by the Affordable Care Act as a preventive health service, something employers and insurers are generally required to provide at no charge. But the Trump administration developed rules to allow employers to opt out of the mandate if they had religious or moral objections.


A version of those rules was stymied by the courts in 2017, so the administration issued a new set of rules in November, which had been scheduled to take effect on Monday.


However, the judge, Haywood S. Gilliam Jr. of the United States District Court in Oakland, Calif., granted a request by 13 states and the District of Columbia for a preliminary injunction, writing that the new rules “are nearly identical to” the ones that he had previously blocked.


The plaintiffs, he wrote, had done enough to bolster their claim that the religious exemption and the moral exemption sought by the Trump administration were “not in accordance with” the Affordable Care Act.


After Judge Gilliam blocked the initial rules, the Trump administration appealed. Last month the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld the District Court’s ruling but limited the injunction’s scope.


With that ruling in mind, Judge Gilliam made clear that the preliminary injunction he granted on Sunday bars enforcement in only the states that sued.


“The Court fully recognizes that limiting the scope of this injunction to the plaintiff states means that women in other states are at risk of losing access to cost-free contraceptives when the final rules take effect,” he wrote in Sunday’s order.

Judge Blocks Trump Birth Control in 13 States and DC

The challengers "have raised serious questions going to the merits, on their claim that the Religious Exemption and the Moral Exemption are inconsistent with the Women's Health Amendment," wrote Judge Haywood Gilliam, Jr., who was nominated by President Barack Obama in 2014. The states had argued that the new policy "cannot be reconciled with the text and purpose of the ACA — which seeks to promote access to women's healthcare, not limit it."


January 14, 2019 in Healthcare, Reproductive Rights | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, January 11, 2019

Psychology Association Issues First-Ever Guidelines for Men and Boys

APA Issues First-Ever Guidelines for Practice with Men and Boys

For the first time ever, APA is releasing guidelines to help psychologists work with men and boys.


At first blush, this may seem unnecessary. For decades, psychology focused on men (particularly white men), to the exclusion of all others. And men still dominate professionally and politically: As of 2018, 95.2 percent of chief operating officers at Fortune 500 companies were men. According to a 2017 analysis by Fortune, in 16 of the top companies, 80 percent of all high-ranking executives were male. Meanwhile, the 115th Congress, which began in 2017, was 81 percent male.


But something is amiss for men as well. Men commit 90 percent of homicides in the United States and represent 77 percent of homicide victims. They’re the demographic group most at risk of being victimized by violent crime. They are 3.5 times more likely than women to die by suicide, and their life expectancy is 4.9 years shorter than women’s. Boys are far more likely to be diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder than girls, and they face harsher punishments in school—especially boys of color.


APA’s new Guidelines for Psychological Practice With Boys and Men strive to recognize and address these problems in boys and men while remaining sensitive to the field’s androcentric past. Thirteen years in the making, they draw on more than 40 years of research showing that traditional masculinity is psychologically harmful and that socializing boys to suppress their emotions causes damage that echoes both inwardly and outwardly.

January 11, 2019 in Gender, Healthcare, Manliness, Masculinities | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Programs on Women and Law at AALS Annual Meeting

Thursday, January 3


10:30-12:15 WILE ("Women in Legal Education" Section), co-Sponsoring with the Section on Agricultural and Food Law: Worker Justice in the Food System.

One in six jobs in the U.S. is in the food supply chain, from restaurants, to grocery stores, to food processing, and production. These jobs offer low wages, little job security, and few benefits. In addition, they often include dangerous working conditions. And yet, food system workers are under protected by minimum wage and hour laws, workplace safety laws, and others. This panel will focus on three key issues facing food chain laborers today: sexual harassment, immigration restrictions and enforcement, and occupational health hazards.

Speaker: Jennifer M. Chacon, University of California, Irvine School of Law 

Speaker: Joan Flocks, University of Florida Fredric G. Levin College of Law

Speaker: Tanya Kateri Hernandez, Fordham University School of Law 

Moderator: Margot Pollans, Pace University Elisabeth Haub School of Law


10:30-12:15pm Hot Topics: Narratives about Sexual Harassment & Sexual Violence: #MeToo, the Kavanaugh Allegations & Pending Changes to Title IX Enforcement  

Media coverage of the #MeToo movement and allegations that Justice Kavanaugh committed sexual assault fueled public discourse about sexual harassment and sexual violence throughout the past year. Two sets of competing narratives emerged about both the nature of sexual harassment and sexual violence and the appropriate institutional and public responses to disclosures and allegations. One set of narratives focused on survivors’ experiences of trauma, barriers to accessing resources, and inadequate responses following disclosures. The other set of narratives centered on individuals accused of committing sexual harassment or sexual violence, their identification as victims of false allegations, and claims of inadequate due process protections. In this presentation, scholars use the context of campus sexual misconduct and the proposed changes to Title IX guidance to address the wide range of narratives impacting sexual harassment and sexual violence law and policy.     

The Section on Civil Rights is co-sponsoring the session, and more information can be found at:


1:30 pm - 3:15 pm AALS Discussion Group The Future of Sexual Harassment

This discussion group brings together scholars working on various dimensions of sexual harassment law at work and on campus. To ground the discussion, participants are encouraged to read and respond to the “Open Statement on Sexual Harassment” by Vicki Schultz, recently published in the Stanford Law Review at The ensuing discussion will center on questions including: What is sexual harassment? What causes it? What makes a theory of harassment better or worse? Does harassment differ at work and on campus (and elsewhere), or by race, ethnicity, age, class, sexual orientation, gender non-conformity, or other factors? What can be done, in the law or elsewhere, to prevent and address harassment? How has activism and the law helped or hindered progress, whether historically and today? What are the dangers to be avoided in the future?

Discussion Group Participant: Rachel Arnow-Richman, University of Denver Sturm College of Law 

Discussion Group Participant: Jessica Clarke, Vanderbilt University Law School 
Discussion Group Participant: Ann C. McGinley, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Melissa E. Murray, New York University School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Angela I. Onwuachi-Willig, Boston University School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Darren Rosenblum, Pace University Elisabeth Haub School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Leticia Saucedo, University of California, Davis, School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Vicki Schultz, Yale Law School 
Discussion Group Moderator: Brian Soucek, University of California, Davis, School of


1:30 pm - 3:15 pm American Bar Foundation Program, Women Trailblazers in the Law Oral History Project

The Women Trailblazers Project (WTP) oral history collection is a rich new trove of research materials, now readily accessible to legal academicians, historians and other scholars. The WTP, a collaborative research project of the American Bar Association and the American Bar Foundation, has taken comprehensive, full-life oral histories of over a hundred leading women pioneers in the legal profession nationwide. These senior women lawyers, judges and law professors were chosen for their exceptional career achievements and their contributions to opening opportunities for other women. They entered a male-dominated profession, graduating from law schools in the years ranging from the 1940s to the 1970s, and often faced blatant sex discrimination and a variety of other challenges. The Robert Crown Law Library at Stanford University has created a new website dedicated to displaying the WTP collection of oral histories and related materials.

Speaker: Barbara A. Babcock, Stanford Law School 

Speaker: Ms. Brooksley Born, Arnold & Porter LLP 
Speaker: Nancy Gertner, Harvard Law School 
Moderator: Ajay K. Mehrotra, Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law 
Speaker: Beth Williams, Stanford Law School 


6:00 pm - 7:30 pm Women in Academic Leadership in Reception, Hosted by the University of Georgia School of Law


Friday, January 4


8:30 am - 10:15 am AALS Hot Topic Program, Religious Exemptions and Harm to Third Parties

Should the government be able to provide religious exemptions when they result in harm to third-parties? This question is particularly weighty at this moment in American history when religious exemptions have perhaps never been more controversial. In light of recent Supreme Court cases like Hobby Lobby and Masterpiece Cakeshop, some scholars have advanced new theories that would place strict limits on government’s ability to grant religious exemptions that result in harm (or externalities) to third parties who do not benefit from that religious practice. This program will explore the historical, theoretical, normative, and doctrinal arguments for and against a rule that would prohibit religious exemptions that result in more than de minimis harm to identifiable third parties.


8:30-10:15 Building Bridges with Shared Experiences: The Women in Legal Education Oral History Project. Business meeting will be held at the end of the session. 

For the past four to five years, a small group of Women in Legal Education Section Members, led by Professor Marie Failinger (Mitchell Hamline School of Law), have been recording oral histories of the women in the legal academy. The Oral History Project’s goal is to gather the stories of as many women in the academy as possible to develop a robust library of histories that can be used for research, study, or enjoyment. More than 40 women have been interviewed as of January 2018. In this session, panelists will explain the Oral History Project and share thoughts, reactions, and experiences, as we show clips from the Oral History Project about decisions that led women into the legal academy, often at a time where there were few women on law faculties.


9:00am to 12:15pm  AALS Socioeconomics Panel, co-sponsored by WILE Section, Gender, Race and Competition in the New Economy   

Anti-discrimination law took hold during an era in which “good jobs” involved “narrow portals of entry” into secure career ladders. The predominant economic theory of discrimination at the time suggested that different treatment involved employment and consumer “tastes” or dislike of other groups. Today’s economy has dismantled the secure employment and predictable career ladders of mid-century America. In the process, inequality has grown, and the dominance of white (and in some cases Asian) men has increased in the upper reaches of the economy. Indeed, while the gendered wage gap has narrowed overall, the gap has increased for college graduates since the early nineties. This panel will consider how to understand the redefinition of “good jobs” in a networked economy, the new remade terms of competition among employees, and the implications for gender and racial diversity.

The socioeconomics section will start at 9 with a brief intro.  We will get underway at 9:15 and run until  12:15, with two panels and a break in between..

The first panel will run from 9:15 to 10:40. That session will focus more on the corporate side of the topic and will address proposals for employee ownership, the importance of big data, and the relationship between diversity and corporate governance. The panelists will be: Lisa Fairfax, Josephine Nelson, Frank Pasquale, and Steve Ramirez.  


The second panel will address the relationships between the corporate developments and employment discrimination law and the question of whether employment discrimination is -- or should be -- designed to deal with these developments. This panel will begin at 10:50 and run until 12:15. The panelists will be: Naomi Cahn, June Carbone, Jessica Clarke, and Mike Selmi.


10:30 am - 12:15 pm AALS Discussion Group, Building Bridges Across Curricular and Status Lines: Gender Inequity throughout the Legal Academy

The goal of the program is to highlight persistent issues of gender inequity in the legal academy that disadvantage all women faculty and students, particularly those of color. In keeping with the conference theme of Building Bridges, panelists are representative of various ABA-categorized faculty, including traditional tenured faculty employed under ABA Standard 405(b), clinical faculty employed under ABA Standard (405(c)), and legal writing faculty subject to ABA Standard 405(d), as well as faculty holding administrative positions. Discussion participants hope to share common experiences and begin a conversation that will continue well beyond the Annual Meeting. Planned areas for discussion include gender inequities inherent in legal scholarship, institutional labor and leadership, perceptions and expectations applicable to female faculty, and hierarchies related to security of position.

Discussion Group Participant: Sahar Aziz, Rutgers Law School 

Discussion Group Participant: Mary Bowman, Seattle University School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Leslie P. Culver, California Western School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Meera Deo, Law School Survey of Student Engagement 
Discussion Group Participant: Darby Dickerson, The John Marshall Law School 
Discussion Group Participant: Susan Hanley Duncan, University of Mississippi School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Mary A. Lynch, Albany Law School 
Discussion Group Participant: Ann C. McGinley, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Deborah J. Merritt, The Ohio State University, Michael E. Moritz College of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Angela I. Onwuachi-Willig, University of California, Berkeley School of Law 
Discussion Group Participant: Alicia E. Plerhoples, Georgetown University Law Center 
Discussion Group Moderator: Kristen Konrad Tiscione, Georgetown University Law Center 
Discussion Group Moderator: Melissa H. Weresh, Drake University Law School 


10:30 am - 12:15 pm Criminal Justice, Rape and Sexual Assault in the Era of #MeToo

In 2015, the American Law Institute (ALI) sought to redefine the Model Penal Code’s definition of rape. To date, ALI’s membership has failed to reach consensus. They are not alone in struggling to define the crime of rape. State and federal actors have struggled with questions of how to define rape and how (or even whether) to construct processes around the crime. This panel considers these efforts in the era of the #MeToo movement, which has highlighted the prevalence of workplace sexual harassment, sexual assault, and attitudes that condone and promulgate this behavior. While not all of the behavior #MeToo addresses falls within proposed definitions of rape, the larger social norms the movement challenges nonetheless influence how criminal law defines the crime of rape. This panel will consider how #MeToo has changed the questions that legislators, police officers, practitioners, and scholars ask when considering the crime of rape.

Speaker: Bennett Capers, Brooklyn Law School 

Moderator: Jenny E. Carroll, Hugh F. Culverhouse Jr. School of Law at The University of Alabama

Speaker: Erin Collins, The University of Richmond School of Law

Speaker: Cynthia M. Godsoe, Brooklyn Law School

Speaker: Aya Gruber, University of Colorado Law School
Speaker: Corey Rayburn Yung, University of Kansas School of Law 


12:15-1:30 Women in Legal Education Luncheon and Presentation of the 2019 Ruth Bader Ginsburg Lifetime Achievement Award to Chancellor Phoebe Haddon. This is a ticketed event; please purchase your ticket in advance.


1:30-3:15 Hot Topic Program: Civil Rights in the Aftermath of the Kavanaugh Hearings and Confirmation. 

The Senate Judiciary Committee’s September 27, 2018 hearing concerning Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's allegations that U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh committed assault upon her person proved a watershed political and jurisprudential moment. We have now learned of Justice Kavanaugh’s positions on reproductive freedoms, immigrant rights, presidential power, and female testimonial credibility, which may well transform the protections afforded by the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses and the Civil Rights Act. Furthermore, his performance at the September 27 hearing triggers issues about judicial temperament, ethics, and even the judge’s role as a creator of legal and social truth. 


In this Hot Topic Panel, legal scholars will address the ways in which Justice Kavanaugh’s nomination, hearings, and confirmation impact a wide variety of legal domains, including sexual harassment and assault laws, workplace equality, policing, substantive and criminal law, administrative law, the field of judicial ethics, and the standards of proof appropriate for criminal, legal, and political processes. We will also engage the ways in which Justice Kavanaugh’s role in today's political and legal climate intersects with jurisprudence, such as critical legal feminism and the moral theory of epistemic injustice. 


1:30-3:15 Co-Sponsoring with the Section on Aging and the Law: The Legal Consequences of Living a Long Life: The Differential Impact on Marginalized Communities. 

Thanks to advances in healthcare, people are living longer. Longevity has legal consequences. People can outlive their family, friends, and finances. Longevity has differing impacts on women, people of color, low-income people, and LGBT individuals. Statistically, women make less money than men and they live longer than men. People of color are less financially secure than most Americans. In the United States, approximately 80 percent of long-term care for older people is provided by family members, such as spouses, children, and other relatives. This places an undue financial burden on families and on low-income persons. LGBT individuals may face conscious and unconscious discrimination when seeking long-term care and other assistance, and they have had historically formed different family structures. This panel will explore the intersection of the legal system and longevity, examining systems that are in place or should be in place to help people plan for living longer.

Speaker: Ms. Donohon Abdugafurova, Emory University Islamic Civilizations Studies 

Speaker: Anne L. Alstott, Yale Law School 
Speaker: Jalila Jefferson-Bullock, Duquesne University School of Law 
Moderator: Browne C. Lewis, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law at Cleveland State University 
Speaker: Beverly I. Moran, Vanderbilt University Law School 
Speaker: Nancy E. Shurtz, University of Oregon School of Law 
Speaker: Jessica Dixon Weaver, Southern Methodist University, Dedman School of Law 


Saturday, January 5


10:30 am - 12:15 pm AALS Program, #MeToo - The Courts, The Academy and Law Firms

In the wake of the #MeToo movement, courts, law firms, and the academy are taking a serious look at how they address workplace conduct, including bullying and sexual harassment. Law firms are improving their practices for addressing the complex issues surrounding harassment. The federal judiciary is revising its ethics codes, stepping up training, and revamping its procedures for investigating complaints. Law schools are engaging with their students on this issue like never before. The key challenges remain the significant power disparities and the chilling effect of reporting. Law schools are in a unique position to serve as a bridge between students and the greater legal community to help reduce these risks. This panel will discuss practical and novel ways that law schools can partner with the courts and the legal community to address these issues. This discussion will also include the important voice of someone who has experienced sexual harassment.

Speaker: Ms. Hilarie Bass, American Bar Association 

Speaker: Ms. Marguerite Gilles, Yale Law School 

Speaker: Gillian L. Lester, Columbia Law School 
Speaker: The Honorable M. Margaret McKeown, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit 
Moderator: Michael H. Schwartz, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law 
Speaker: Ms. Nicole VanderDoes, 




1:30-3:15 Building Bridges: WiLE Networking, Mentoring, and Discussion. 


This is a reboot of our Speed Mentoring session. This session will give us an opportunity to have focused discussion as well as more informal discussion about topics that impact all of us and our students and colleagues. The primary discussion topics grew out of the discussion on our Section's Listserv this past fall in the wake of the Kavanaugh hearings. We have four primary goals for this session:  

  1. To address the meaning of the hearings for session participants in their roles as legal academics, lawyers, citizens, and for some, survivors of harassment or assault; 
  2. To reveal challenges the participants faced in occupying those roles and charting a path forward; 
  3. To mentor one another by sharing strategies that enabled the participants to cope with the challenges posed; and 
  4. To provide a forum to network and form alliances in the wake of an event in American political history, which galvanized the country and the legal academy.


Sunday, January 6


8:30 am - 10:15 am Evidence, Problems of Proof: #MeToo and 'Who Me?'

The #MeToo movement has galvanized women and women's groups to call out, respond to, and challenge pervasive sexual harassment in workplaces as varied as Uber, Hollywood, and Congress. Charges, as well as civil lawsuits are being filed. But what will happen if and when these cases go to trial? Sexual harassment cases are notoriously "he said, she said," situations subject to the interpretations of the "reasonable" or "objective" person, and social standards and mores about what does and does not cross the line. Recent backlash against what constitutes harassment blurs the lines between actionable wrongs, poor judgment, and bad manners. This panel will examine the evidentiary basis for sexual harassment claims, the problems of proof with credibility issues, the evidentiary standards of civil and criminal cases, and the challenges and opportunities for litigants in the courtroom.

Speaker: Mr. Charles Gibbs, McMonagle Perri McHugh Mischak Davis 

Speaker: Christine Chambers Goodman, Pepperdine University School of Law 
Speaker: Aya Gruber, University of Colorado Law School 
Speaker: Catharine A. MacKinnon, The University of Michigan Law School 
Speaker: Ms. Sandra C. Munoz, Law Offices of Sandra C. Munoz 
Speaker from a Call for Papers: Julia Simon-Kerr, University of Connecticut School of Law 
Speaker: Deborah Tuerkheimer, Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law 
Speaker: Maggie Wittlin, University of Nebraska College of Law 
10:30 am - 12:15 pm -Soci0-Economics Co-Sponsored by Minority Groups Race, Gender, and Socio-Economic Justice
This session explores the goals of greater minority and gender justice and empowerment and their relationship to socio-economic methodology. Socio-economic methodology recognizes that systemic race and gender injustice and the goals of minority and gender empowerment cannot be adequately understood or addressed by a legal analysis limited to the narrow neoclassical approach to law and economics. Would the aforementioned goals be substantially aided if the socio-economic methodology were to become the dominant academic approach to law-related economic issues? The panelists and audience will be invited to share their views.
Speaker: Deleso A. Alford, Southern University Law Center 
Speaker: Deborah N. Archer, New York University School of Law 
Moderator and Speaker: Robert Ashford, Syracuse University College of Law 
Speaker: William K. Black, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law 
Speaker: June Rose Carbone, University of Minnesota Law School 
Speaker: Martha Albertson Fineman, Emory University School of Law 
Speaker: Philip L. Harvey, Rutgers Law School 
Speaker: Tayyab Mahmud, Seattle University School of Law 

January 3, 2019 in Conferences, Law schools | Permalink | Comments (0)