WASHINGTON, Jan. 18, 2017 — Lessons learned from South Florida’s response to the Zika virus, tips on doing business in Cuba, and Florida law school deans on the state of legal education are chief among highlights of local interest that will be explored at the 2017 American Bar Association Midyear Meeting Feb. 1-6 in Miami.
With several hundred top-quality legal programs and events, and presentations by the country’s foremost law experts and speakers, the ABA Midyear Meeting is the nation’s premier gathering of legal professionals. Among local presenters, Mayor Philip Stoddard and representatives from the Florida Department of Health will explore South Florida’s response to the Zika virus and share lessons learned. Marcos Jimenez, former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and other Miami lawyers will discuss expected enforcement priorities of the Trump administration. And, Miami-Dade County Public Defender Carlos J. Martinez will discuss ways to mitigate bias in the justice system. Other noteworthy Floridians on the agenda are included below.
The 589-member ABA House of Delegates—the association’s policy-making body—will meet Feb. 6, 9 a.m., in the James L. Knight Center (3rd Floor) of the Hyatt Regency Miami. For details on the proposals for debate and vote during the one-day session, click here.
Programs of interest to Floridians include:
Thursday, Feb. 2
“Achieving Civil Justice for All: Recommendations, Next Steps” — Leaders of the ABA Civil Justice Improvements Committee – including Judge Jennifer D. Bailey of the 11th Judicial Circuit Court of Florida, Chief Justice Thomas A. Balmer of the Supreme Court of Oregon, and former Chief Justice Wallace B. Jefferson of the Supreme Court of Texas – will share the committee’s 13 recommendations to help ameliorate the high costs, frequent delays and complexity of the civil justice system.
2-4 p.m., Hyatt Regency Miami, 3rd Floor, Ashe Auditorium
“Community Benefits Agreements, Environmental Justice and Access to Housing” — Miami-Dade County Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava and Advocacy Director Shahrzad Emami of Legal Services of Greater Miami, Inc., will be among panelists discussing the successful use of “community benefits,” a new practice where in private-sector developers work with both government and neighbors to mitigate the adverse impact of new developments and create local area benefits, such as hiring and job training.
4:30-6 p.m., Ackerman LLP, 98 SE 7th, (Brickell City Center)
Friday, Feb. 3
“Collaborate to Advocate: Lawyers and Advocates Working to End Poverty” — The ABA will collaborate with Florida lawyers and advocates to identify, promote and implement best practices for eliminating legal and justice system-related policies, practices and procedures that unfairly perpetuate or worsen the harmful effects of poverty on low-income people and communities in the state.
8:30 a.m.–4 p.m., Marriott Biscayne Bay, Level 3, Grand Salon F
“Cuba Libre: The Potential Legal Costs and Benefits” — A panel will discuss the changes made to the regulations surrounding transactions with Cuban entities, litigation concerns for businesses and individuals bringing their business to Cuba, current regulations surrounding American and Cuban business transactions, navigating negotiations with the Cuban government and regulation changes on dispute resolution with Cuban entities.
9:15-10:15 a.m., Hilton Miami Downtown, Ballroom Level, Symphony Ballroom I
“Fees and Costs: Barriers for Justice-Involved Youth and Young Adults” — Miami-Dade Chief Assistant Public Defender Marie Osborne and Juvenile Division Director Rob Mason of the Jacksonville, Fla., public defender’s office will be among panelists who will explore the impact of fees and other costs on youth and young adults in the criminal justice system.
9:15-10:15 a.m., Hilton Miami Downtown, Ballroom Level, Symphony Ballroom II
“Road Rage: The Future of Transportation Management in Big Cities” — As Altamonte Springs, Fla., recently became the first in the nation to implement the public subsidization of Uber rides within city limits to address its public transportation gaps, a panel of Florida lawyers will discuss the advantages and pitfalls of the new program and other such ride-sharing alternatives to large-scale infrastructure investments.
9:15-10:15 a.m., Hilton Miami Downtown, Ballroom Level, Symphony Ballroom IV
“Analysis of the Latino Vote in the 2016 November Election – Trends in Latino Voting” — Executive Director Arturo Vargas of the National Association of Elected Officials will be among experts who will analyze the recent election and identify trends in Latino voting. Where did the Latino vote create the most impact? What were the surprises?
10-11:30 a.m., JW Marriott Marquis, 5th Floor, Plaza 5
“The Zika Virus: The Legal Implications of a Public Health Emergency” — Mayor Philip K. Stoddard of South Miami and representatives from the Florida Department of Health, Monroe County Administrator Bob Eadie and Florida state epidemiologist Anna M. Likos, will discuss their response to the Zika virus and the lessons learned that will benefit other public health emergencies.
10:30-11:30 a.m., Hilton Miami Downtown, Ballroom Level, Symphony Ballroom I
“Bridging the Gap: Issues with Equal Pay” — A panel of leading female attorneys from Florida – including Pierce T. MacLennan, Elaine W. Keyser, Diane Perez and Lindsey Wagner – will discuss the gender pay gap in America and analyze current developments to address it, such as proposed legislation, and provide insight into what still remains to be done.
10:30-11:30 a.m., Hilton Miami Downtown, Ballroom Level, Symphony Ballroom IV
“Changing Tides: How Law Schools are Riding the Wave of an Evolving Legal Market” — Deans from several Florida law schools – including those from Stetson University, Florida A&M University College of Law, University of Florida and University of Miami Law – will analyze the changing legal market and how their law schools are carving new paths to ensure students are prepared to enter the legal profession.
10:30-11:30 a.m., Hilton Miami Downtown, Ballroom Level, Symphony Ballroom III
“Doing Business in Cuba – New Developments” — A panel of seasoned Miami attorneys will discuss the latest regulatory developments, analyze how these developments impact the economic sector, provide insight on the realities of doing business in Cuba and debate the effectiveness of differing strategies in best establishing Cuban business relations.
2:30-4 p.m., JW Marriott Marquis, 5th Floor, Plaza 5
“Enforcement Priorities in the Trump Administration” — Panelists – including Marcos Jimenez, former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida– will forecast trends in criminal and civil enforcement under the Trump administration. Topics will include the investigation and prosecution of securities and healthcare fraud, immigration, terrorism, cybercrime, domestic and global tax offenses, as well as sentencing and drug policy.
3-5 p.m., Epic Hotel, 14th Floor, Metropolis Ballroom B
“Town Hall on Election Reform” — ABA leaders, community members and other stakeholders will discuss needed reforms related to Election Day and early voting. Presenters will also share the progress made on reform and changes on the horizon in the Miami area, since the ABA held its first town hall meeting there in 2014.
3:15-5 p.m., Marriott Biscayne Bay, Level 3, Grand Salon GH
“The Constitutional Crisis with Florida’s Death Penalty Post-Hurst and Its Implications for Additional States” — A panel will examine the implications and developments following the Florida Supreme Court’s October ruling on Hurst v. Florida, which requires a unanimous jury for a death sentence, as other states such as Alabama and Delaware consider similar measures. Panelists will include Martin McClain, who litigated Hurst retroactively before the Florida Supreme Court, as well as retired Judge O.H. Eaton Jr. of the 8th Judicial Circuit of Florida and Karen Gottlieb, co-director of the Florida Center for Capital Representation.
3:30-5 p.m., Hyatt Regency Miami, 3rd Floor, Miami Lecture Hall
Saturday, Feb. 4
“12th Annual Summit on Public Defense Improvement” — This all-day conference will review national developments in indigent defense. Among programs, Miami-Dade County Public Defender Carlos J. Martinez and Charlotte, N.C., Assistant Public Defender Toussaint C. Romain will lead a panel at 1 p.m. that will explore racial injustice in the criminal justice system and the impact of implicit bias and structural racism. The panel will also promote ways that chief defenders, line defenders, investigators and others can combat racial injustice.
8:30 a.m.-4:15 p.m., Miami Dade College (300 NE 2nd Ave.)
“Cholera, Haiti, & the UN’s Liability: What Remedies Does the UN Owe to Haitians for Creating a Health Epidemic?” — Haiti’s cholera epidemic has been traced to unsanitary practices of United Nations peacekeepers working in the country following the 2010 earthquake. Those on the frontlines of fighting the UN – including Florida lawyers Meena Jagannath, Soeurette Michel and Ira Kurzban, as well as Joseph Pierre-Paul Cadet, president of the Association of Haitian Physicians Abroad – will discuss the challenge of obtaining justice for Haitians.
2-3:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Miami, 3rd Floor, Miami Lecture Hall
“Miami Justice Hack: Strengthening Alliances Between Law Enforcement & Communities of Color Through Technology & Innovation” — Multidisciplinary teams of community members, lawyers, law enforcement officers, programmers and others with technology expertise will collaborate to develop on-site innovative and technology-based solutions that can help mitigate tension between law enforcement and communities of color.
9 a.m.-5 p.m., Venture Café (1951 NW 7th Ave.), 3rd Floor
“Is Florida the Canary in the Coal Mine?: Environmental Justice in Front Line Communities” — Florida serves as the harbinger of environmental justice concerns on a national level. A panel, which will include representatives from the Sierra Club, Broward County Climate Change Response Group, the Environmental Justice Clinic at University of Miami School of Law and others, will examine environmental concerns in the state, including issues related to climate-change adaptation, water quality, nuclear emissions, coastal and inland floods, closure of state parks, Everglades conservation and water rights involving Seminole Indian tribes.
3:30-5 p.m., Hyatt Regency Miami, 3rd Floor, Miami Lecture Hall
Sunday, Feb. 5
“Legal Innovation 101 – Why You Need It” — Florida Bar Past President Ramon Abadin will lead a panel of legal innovation trailblazers and experts – including CEO Chad Burton of CuroLegal, a virtual law firm; legal futurist Jordan Furlong of Law21; and Margaret Hagan of the Program for Legal Tech & Design – for a comprehensive look at how technology and globalization have impacted the legal industry and how lawyers can harness these trends to enhance access to justice and improve their bottom line.
1-3 p.m., Hyatt Regency Miami, 3rd Floor, Miami Lecture Hall
During the Midyear Meeting, accredited journalists should register onsite or pick up their preregistered press credentials at the Hyatt Regency Miami (Riverfront Hall, Lobby Level), beginning at 2 p.m. on Feb. 1. A press room for accredited reporters will be provided at the Hyatt’s Riverfront Hall (lobby level), starting at 9 a.m. on Feb. 2. The room will be open daily thereafter from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., and will close one hour after the adjournment of the House of Delegates on Feb. 6.
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