News and Events: Credit Check Ban in NYC, Tenants Rights forum and more

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Employment Credit Check Ban Takes Effect

By Emmanuel Arnaud/Cornell Law School Class of 2016, LJP Legal Intern

On September 3, 2015, LatinoJustice and fellow members of the Coalition to Stop Credit Checks in Employment celebrated the implementation of the “Stop Credit Discrimination in Employment Act,” a law that prohibits employers in NYC from checking the credit histories of potential hires and current employees. The Coalition of over 80 community, labor, civil rights and student organizations led the campaign to ban employment credit checks, a pernicious form of employment discrimination that disproportionately harms low income New Yorkers and people of color.

NYC’s new law – the strongest of its kind in the country - amends the local Human Rights Law and makes it illegal for employers to ask about or in any way use consumer credit information in making hiring, promotion, demotion, compensation or any other employment decisions. To see LatinoJustice's letter of support, see link here. The New York City Commission on Human Rights will be hosting “Know Your Rights” trainings for workers, as well as “Know Your Obligations” trainings for employers, throughout the city.


Washington Governor Grants Rare Commutation for Latino Inmate

LatinoJustice's legal advocacy helped result in Washington State Governor Jay Inslee granting a rare and extraordinary commutation to Aaron Borrero on August 20, 2015. "We are very gratified by this outcome for Mr. Borrero who had received two prior unanimous recommendations for clemency by the Washington State Clemency Board without the Governor's approval" stated Senior counsel Jackson Chin. "He is transitioning into the community with work release and is set for a full for release in June 2017."

Borrero was described at his clemency hearings “as a leader, a mentor and a role model who has done so much good volunteer and school work while in prison”. He promoted racial relations among inmates. The King County prosecutor who had initially opposed early release subsequently changed his position to support clemency. Moreover, the complaining witness in the underlying criminal incident who himself served several years in prison testified in support of Borrero’s release.

This case illustrates the U.S. criminal justice system’s capriciousness and failure to be even-handed. Borrero was a 22-year-old Puerto Rican high school graduate when he was sentenced disproportionately in 1998. In contrast, two white defendants charged with identical offenses for the same crime resulted in one being sentenced to 5 years and released early; the other case was dismissed due to hung juries. Borrero will have served 17 of his 22.9-year sentence by the time he is released.


Tenants’ and Landlords’ Rights Forum

Jose Perez, Deputy General Counsel of LatinoJustice, is overseeing a Spanish Street Law Housing/Tenants’ Rights community education KYR on Sept 29th via the Dominican Bar Association (DBA) Street Street Law en Espanol program. The presenters are three DBA members of New York Law Sschool Latin American Law School Association. The community partner this time is La Casa de la Herencia Cultural Puertorriqueña who are hosting the workshop as part of their new Community Education Series sponsored by the Hispanic Federation at Julia de Burgos Latino Cultural Center in El Barrio! You can see the event link here


LatinoJustice PRLDEF Annual Awards Gala Save the Date

Join us as for the LatinoJustice PRLDEF Annual Awards Gala, November 10, 2015, at the Grand Hyatt New York.

This year we are honoring:

  • LUCERO: Pilar S. Ramos, General Counsel-North America, MasterCard International
  • CORPORATE LEADER: Comcast Corporation
  • CAP LEADER: Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton LLP
  • COMMUNITY CHAMPION: Junot Diaz, Pulitzer-prize winning author, MacArthur Fellow and Co-founder, Voices of Our Nation Workshop.

Click here for tickets and sponsorship information.

If you are an artist or crafter and want to participate in the Gala Silent Auction and Mercado, please contact ldiaz@latinojustice.org.

Questions? Contact dmedina@latinojustice.org


Registration for Law Day 2015 Now Open

LatinoJustice PRLDEF and Pace Law School cordially invite you to attend our 33rd Annual Law Day on October 24, 2015. The event will be held at Pace University, 1 Pace Plaza, New York, NY 10038 from 10am to 4pm. You can find more information about the event here. Students can also register here.


Twitter Roundup

  1. .@NHLAgenda calls on presidential candiates to adopt a #Latino agenda for #2016Election article by @Carrasquillo here
  2. #CivicParticipation rates climb for young #Latinos. Engagement is there, just about finding ways to plug-in You can read article here
  3. We mourn passing of Sara Rios, an activist, attorney and wonderful spirit. Read her inspirational story here

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