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ABA Midyear 2022 promises busy virtual agenda

The American Bar Association’s 2022 Virtual Midyear Meeting kicks off Wednesday, Feb. 9, offering several dozen top-quality legal programs and events. The meeting concludes Monday, Feb. 14, following the session of the ABA House of Delegates (HOD), which will consider passage of a wide range of policies that address topics that include added requirements for legal education and help for individuals facing evictions, for veterans, for children involved in custody disputes and for seniors in nursing homes.

The ABA's 2022 Midyear Meeting, to take place Feb. 9-14, is the second consecutive February event held virtually.

The ABA's 2022 Midyear Meeting, to take place Feb. 9-14, is the second consecutive February event held virtually.

Important legal topics addressed in Midyear programming include ideas to tackle U.S. racial inequity; regulatory changes for the legal profession; implicit bias through the lens of the Kyle Rittenhouse case; and the impact of partisan redistricting. The latter program, “The Challenges of Partisan Redistricting —Does Gerrymandering Pose a Threat to Our Democracy?” is sponsored by the ABA Committee on Issues of Concern to the Legal Profession and takes place from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. CST as part of Monday’s HOD session. Featured panelists include Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the University of California at Berkeley School of Law, and Kathay Feng, national redistricting director for Common Cause.

This year’s ABA Midyear Meeting is the second consecutive February event held virtually. Due to pandemic concerns, the ABA Board of Governors converted to online the planned in-person proceedings, which were to take place in Seattle, Washington.

While additional late resolutions can be offered, the current HOD agenda has a wide range of 25 proposals. Among the topics the resolutions address:

  • Adoption of federal laws and policies to ensure that all persons in each state, regardless of immigration status, are included in the apportionment count used to redistribute seats in the U.S. House following each decennial census. The issue was most recently raised by federal litigation filed in 2018 and could arise again in the 2030 census.
  • Proposed changes to law school standards that would expand non-discrimination and equality of opportunity to include military status, ethnicity and gender identity and expression; require students receive education in bias, cross-cultural competency and racism both at the beginning of their legal studies and later during their law school careers; and mandate students receive information about financial aid and student loan debt resources.

The 596-member HOD is the ABA’s policymaking body; only proposals it adopts constitute association policy.

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