Take Notes, Kids: This is How You Do Legal Writing

In early September, the Tenth Circuit issued its opinion in our case against Hollister’s faux front porches.  It was good news, good news, but ultimately bad news:  we prevailed on standing and class certification — making some darn good law in the process —  but lost on the merits.  Judge Kelly, writing for the majority, held essentially that since “porches” weren’t mentioned in the accessibility standards, Hollister’s porches could be inaccessible.  Judge McHugh, in dissent, took the opposite view:  that the standards generally require access unless an exception applies. On October 16, we filed a petition for rehearing or rehearing en banc.  Today, the U.S. Department of Justice and a group of disability rights organizations each filed amicus briefs in support of our petition.  Both briefs were terrific and deeply appreciated.  But one paragraph of the latter brief, which was written by Michelle Uzeta, stands out for me: For an individual who uses a wheelchair, the symbolic meaning of the Hollister store design is simple and direct. The staired and extensively decorated main porch entrance, through which able-bodied customers are welcomed, celebrated and able to enjoy the full Hollister experience, is off-limits; a privileged space in which individuals with disabilities are not welcome. Denied the shade of the mission-style overhang and feeling of entering a hip California surf shack, individuals with disabilities are relegated to using plain, shuttered doors located to the side of, and recessed behind, the open main porch area. The message is clear. You don’t belong here. You need to stay out of sight. You need to be separated. You have less value. You are unequal....

A new old case and a road trip!

CREEC is excited to announce that we are joining the ACLU National Prison Project and the ACLU of Montana as co-counsel on the case of Langford v. Bullock.  The Langford case was brought and settled in the early 1990s, but the implementation period is ongoing with respect to a claim under Title II of the ADA.  CREEC is lending its expertise in this area.  We all gathered in Helena for a settlement meeting today and, of course, the traditional post-meeting beer: Jon Ellingson of the Montana ACLU, Ajmel Quereshi of the ACLU NPP, and CREECsters Sarah Morris and...

We’re having an Event!

Please join us for our inaugural event on Thursday, November 13. I know. I know.  CREEC got underway over a year ago.  But!  We only got our 501(c)(3) letter in August, so the Official Launch of our Ability to Ask People to Give Us Money to Support our Awesome Programs didn’t happen until just recently. So we’re having a party!  Please join us at 5:30 on November 13 at Museo de las Americas, 861 Santa Fe Drive, Denver, CO. We are very privileged to announce that Bill Lann Lee will be joining us to introduce CREEC and talk about Innovative Civil Rights Enforcement.  Bill is a lawyer with the plaintiffs’ civil rights firm of Lewis, Feinberg, Lee, Renaker and Jackson in Oakland, CA.  He was the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division in the Department of Justice under President Clinton and earlier in his career, he spent 18 years as an attorney with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the law firm founded by Justice Thurgood Marshall. There will also be drinks, appetizers, music, and the opportunity to schmooze with other civil rights fans. We’d like to invite you to sponsor the event and help support our programs like the Medical Communications Access Project and investigations of inaccessible sidewalks and housing and lending discrimination against pregnant women.  Sponsorship Levels: Habanero – $10,000 – 10 tickets + CREEC messenger bag Cayenne – $5,000 – 8 tickets + CREEC tote bag Jalapeno – $2,500 – 6 tickets + CREEC flask Chipotle – $1,000 – 4 tickets + CREEC coasters Peppadew – $500 – 2 tickets + CREEC magnet and...