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Monday, June 16 • 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Litigating Implicit Bias

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CLE: 1.00

Jon Rapping's Law Review Article on Implicit Bias

Objectives: This session will discuss the social science behind implicit racial bias and examine how it influences various criminal justice actors, before proposing a three prong strategy for defenders to address racial disparity in the criminal justice system.  The first prong involves working with defenders to understand the concept of implicit racial bias and to raise awareness of how it can affect the way they represent their clients.  By raising self-awareness, defenders can work to address the role they play in driving racial disparity.  The next prong involves educating other actors in the system with an eye towards raising their consciousness about their own biases.  The conscientious defender will have several opportunities to do this including voir dire, motions practice, use of experts at trial, jury instructions, and sentencing advocacy.  The third prong involves inspiring defenders to resist pressures to succumb to the status quo, or give up their attempts at reform, when their efforts to raise consciousness stall.  Helping defenders understand that change is slow and that there is value in continuing to resist injustice, and developing strategies to help them sustain themselves through these challenging times, is an important component to the larger reform effort.  The session suggests that each of these three prongs is important to a larger, comprehensive defender response to racial disparity in the criminal justice system.

avatar for Jon Rapping

Jon Rapping

President and Founder, Gideon's Promise
Jonathan Rapping is the President and Founder of Gideon’s Promise. Jon is the Director of the Honors Program in Criminal Justice at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, where he also teaches criminal law and criminal procedure. He is also a Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School where he helps to run its prestigious Trial Advocacy Workshop. He is the former Training Director of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia... Read More →

Monday June 16, 2014 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Development A

Attendees (4)