NJP News | Volume 2 | Issue 3

We are deeply saddened by the senseless tragedy in Orlando. NJP extends our sympathy to the families and survivors, and joins the national and international outpouring of support for the LGBTQ community.

Sexual Assault Victim Can Continue Her Schooling

"Erica," a 15-year old victim of sexual assault, can now continue her education instead of facing a truancy petition. Erica, a student with a learning disability, was traumatized, anxious, depressed, and missing school. Erica's mother asked the school for help, and requested that the school provide Erica with needed accommodations as part of her Individual Educational Plan (IEP). The school was not responsive. Instead Erica and her mother soon found themselves facing a truancy case.
 
The thought of appearing in court and revealing personal medical information worsened Erica's mental health issues. Exasperated, her mother sought help from NJP's Medical Legal Partnership (MLP). The MLP represented Erica in court and forced the school to hold an IEP meeting to address her needs and dismiss the truancy case. Erica is back in school and her IEP now includes additional emotional supports and curriculum adjustments to accommodate her circumstances.
Spokane Public Schools Address Exclusionary Discipline

Spokane schools suspend or expel twice as many students as other schools statewide, affecting disproportionate numbers of minority, disabled, and low-income students. NJP's Spokane Office is working with the ACLU and a coalition of local advocates to change the way Spokane Public Schools impose exclusionary discipline. 
 
As a result of their efforts, the Superintendent has signed a District Resolution that acknowledges the problem and commits the district to implement restorative and inclusionary discipline practices. The District is setting up a 2-year project to ensure that policies that reduce unwarranted exclusion of children are implemented.
NJP-RISE Intern Appointed to Washington Statewide Reentry Council

Governor Jay Inslee has appointed 2016 Goldmark Intern Tarra Simmons to a two year term on the newly created Washington Statewide Reentry Council (WSRC). The Council will make policy and funding recommendations to the Executive and Legislative branches on the needs of previously incarcerated individuals as they seek to reenter society. Tarra will bring valuable perspective to the WSRC based on her personal experience. She is especially committed to elevating the importance of civil legal aid as part of reentry services.
 
A Seattle University School of Law student, Tarra's Internship this summer is with NJP's RISE (Reentry Initiated through Services and Education) Project. Watch Tarra's 8-minute testimony on civil legal aid and reentry before the Washington Supreme Court (beginning at minute 58).
Equal Justice Works Awards Fellowship for Veteran's Medical Legal Partnership

Mariah Hanley has been awarded a prestigious two-year Equal Justice Works Fellowship to develop a Medical Legal Partnership with the VA Medical Center in Seattle. A University of Washington School of Law graduate, Mariah is a passionate advocate for the legal needs of veterans, particularly homeless and women veterans who face unique health related legal issues. During law school she interned and volunteered with both NJP's Veterans Project and Medical Legal Partnership. Mariah's Fellowship is made possible by the generous support of Microsoft and Perkins Coie LLP. 

To learn more about our work contact Bryan Baker, Director of Development, like us on Facebook, and visit our website where you can access our annual reports and explore more of NJP. Also, please share NJP News with your friends and colleagues so they can join NJP in helping make equal justice a reality in Washington State.
 
Sincerely,    
CÚsar E. Torres
Executive Director
Northwest Justice Project | 401 2nd Avenue South, Suite 407 | 206.464.1519 | nwjustice.org 

Northwest Justice Project | 401 2nd Avenue South, Suite 407 | Seattle | WA | 98104