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March 31, 2022 CHAIR COLUMN

April CRSJ Chair's Column

I write this on the eve of what I hope will be the occasion of the first confirmation of a female African American United States Supreme Court Justice. CRSJ sends congratulations to Ketanji Brown Jackson on her historic nomination. I’m grateful that the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2022 (VAWA 2022), which was included as a part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act (H.R. 2471), passed Congress and was signed into law by President Biden on March 15, 2022. I view these two events as important points of progress.

I know that all our hearts reach out to Ukraine. Please join us for our upcoming rapid response webinar: Ukraine’s Refugee Crisis: The Faces of WarThursday, April 7, 2022, 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. ET.

We also hope you’ll join us on Wednesday, April 13th, for our Section’s implicit bias training from 2:15 p.m. to 3:15 p.m. ET (join via Zoom).. This will be the third part of our Section’s four-part Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Training Series for our members. We also plan to bring you the third installment of our Critical Race Theory Webinar Series during the first week in May. So, please stay tuned for that date and join us! Please support our further efforts to promote social justice by coming to our Spring Meeting in San Pedro, CA April 27-29, 2022, where we will partner with the ABA's Commission on Homelessness and Poverty and Senior Lawyers Division on educational and outreach events.  Note the hotel rooms are $159/night and there is no registration fee for the meeting. There are many fun things for you and your family to do in the Los Angeles area, both before and after the meeting. We’ve requested the hotel to offer breakfast at 5:30 a.m. to accommodate Ramadan and will have a list of nearby Mosques and Synagogues for those wanting to attend services that occur during the meeting. Let’s come together in person for the first time in two years to enjoy these experiences and build collaboration. We want to see and spend time with you, so please join us!

We are very pleased to let you know that we have now answered over 140 student questions relating to civil rights law for our Civil Rights Civics Institute (CRCI). Please help us inform students, educators, and the public about this great resource we’ve developed.

I want to thank you for all you do to make the work of our Section effective. I know that together we have put in countless volunteer hours to effectuate our goals. Please know that although each day brings new challenges, we have proven our resiliency, strength, and determination. CRSJ truly shines a light on injustice and stands as a beacon of hope for all committed to justice. Thank you, my friends, for your tireless efforts. They are not in vain. Together we march on, knowing that truth, love, and rightness will prevail. 

Beth K. Whittenbury
Chair, Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice

Beth K. Whittenbury is the 2021-22 Chair of the ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice and past leader of the ABA Commission on Youth at Risk. Currently, she is the Principal at Beth K. Whittenbury & Associates.