first_imgBar Legal Needs of Children Committee made permanent September 15, 2003 Regular News Following a recommendation from the Program Evaluation Committee, the Board of Governors has made permanent a special committee that seeks legal help for children.The board also adopted the PEC’s advice to approve several rule and policy amendments pertaining to certification which were proposed by the Board of Legal Specialization and Education. The rule amendments must still go to the Supreme Court.PEC Chair Hank Coxe said the committee discussed several concerns with a proposal that the Legal Needs of Children Committee be made a permanent rather than a special committee, but eventually unanimously supported the idea.“There are many, many legal needs of children in this state that are not being met,” said board member Sharon Langer, who also serves on the children’s committee. “I feel this is something this board needs to do and it’s a small expense.“This should be a slam dunk; it’s something we shouldn’t even have to think about,” she added. “In the next few years, if we solve and resolve all of the legal needs of children, what a wonderful thing that would be and we could sunset this committee.”The committee was initially charged with working for the implementation of the many recommendations made by the Bar’s Commission on the Legal Needs of Children during its three-year study. Those recommendations encompassed four areas: representation, treatment and services, confidentiality, and education of Bar activities.On a related matter, the board also approved a budget amendment to fund the children’s committee. Budget Committee Chair Jesse Diner said the amount is $11,850, of which $10,000 is a reallocation of Bar staff time.On the BLSE issues, Coxe said most were minor changes affecting various certification areas. The most notable amendment affects when a certified lawyer is criminally convicted of a felony or misdemeanor involving moral turpitude or dishonesty. Under current rules, that lawyer is still entitled to a hearing before his or her certification is revoked, he said, while the new rule would make revocation automatic in those cases.The board approved the changes.Two BLSE proposals are still being reviewed by PEC, pertaining to Rule 6-4. Board member Brian Burgoon said he had concerns about one section that would require a lawyer seeking civil trial certification to vouch that 50 percent — up from the current 30 percent — of his or her practice is devoted to civil trials.Since criminal trial certification also has a 50 percent standard, Burgoon said that could make it impossible for a lawyer who practices in both areas to get both certifications since it would be unlikely the practice would be evenly split between the two areas.Dawna Bicknell, the Bar’s director of Legal Specialization and Education, said that issue is being discussed with the Trial Lawyers Section and won’t come to the board until a future meeting.On other issues, Coxe said the PEC has selected programs it plans to review in the upcoming Bar year. Those are the committees involved in judicial evaluations, the Clients’ Security Fund, and the Long Range Planning Committee. In her report to the board, President-elect Kelly Overstreet Johnson said a proposal has been made to have the Bar’s Executive Committee assume some of the long range planning duties, with the Long Range Planning Committee reporting to it.center_img Bar Legal Needs of Children Committee made permanentlast_img

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