Law Day Celebrated with Luncheon Highlighting Right to Vote
On April 30 the Berks County Bar Association hosted more than 225 guests at our annual celebration of Law Day, a day set aside to highlight the importance of law in our society.
This year’s year theme is American Democracy and the Rule of Law: Why Every Vote Matters. After all, to have “a government of the people, by the people and for the people,” it is necessary that all eligible citizens vote.
Each year the BCBA Law Day Committee conducts an Essay Contest for the 5th and 6th Graders of Berks County. This year, these questions were posed: When you become 18 years old, you will be able to vote in elections. Will you want to vote when you are able? Why or why not? Why do you think voting is an important right?
Left: the winners of the County Mock Trial Championship, Conrad Weiser
Looking for a Lawyer?
Have you just been served with a complaint seeking to foreclose on your home or to change the child custody arrangement or to evict you from your apartment? Or are you considering bankruptcy?
You need to consult with an attorney. Our members are skilled attorneys who can fight for your rights, draft valid legal documents and stand by you in the courtroom. Don’t be misled by television ads for online legal forms. Notaries and petition preparers cannot give legal advice or accompany you to court. And “do-it-yourself” law is a fast lane to disaster. Our members know Pennsylvania law, are available for personal consultations and are accountable to you.
If you feel overwhelmed looking for the attorney right for you, go here for more information on what the Berks County Bar Association can do for you.
Foreclosure Mediation Program Continues
The Berks County Bar Association, in conjunction with the Berks County Courts and Neighborhood Housing Services, have created a program by which those threatened with the loss of their home can seek relief. The program began January 1 and is continuing. Those served with a complaint in a consumer debt or home mortgage case may take advantage of the program.
Read More› for a description of the program.
Rights groups condemn Algeria for unfair trial of activists
Two major human rights advocacy groups on Tuesday voiced [HRW press release] their opposition to the "unfair trial" that led to the conviction of 26 Algerian activists on charges of holding an "armed gathering" and violence against the police. Nine activists were sentenced to six months in prison. The remaining 17, convicted in absentia, received prison sentences of two years. Protesters gathered in the Algerian city of Laghouat [official website, in French] on June 8 to protest the government's protocol for choosing recipients of public housing units, leading to a clash with law enforcement. Human Rights Watch [advocacy website] (HRW)... Full Story››
Appeals court overturns law that would close Mississippi abortion clinic
[JURIST] A three-judge panel for the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit [official website] ruled [text, PDF] on Tuesday to overturn a 2012 Mississippi state law [text, PDF] that would have closed Jackson Women's Health Organization (JWHO) [official website], the only abortion clinic in the state. The law required that all physicians associated with an abortion facility must have admitting privileges at a local hospital. None of the three JWHO-affiliated physicians had such privileges. The state [official website] argued that closing JWHO did not impose and undue burden on women seeking abortions since they could travel to a... Full Story››
Congressman introduces bill to legalize marijuana oil
[JURIST] US Representative Scott Perry (R-PA) [official website] on Monday introduced a bill [press release] to nationally legalize cannabidiol (CBD) oil, or marijuana extract, which has been shown to treat seizures in children suffering from epilepsy. Although the bill, called the "Charlotte's Web Medical Hemp Act of 2014," does not legalize all forms of marijuana [Penn Live report] for medical use, it does remove CBD oil and therapeutic hemp from the federal definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act. "Therapeutic hemp" is that which contains no more than .3% THC and thus produces no "high." The introduction of the... Full Story››
UN rights chief calls for end to fighting in eastern Ukraine
[JURIST] The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) [official website] on Monday issued a report [text, PDF] documenting what it refers to as "the continuing deterioration of the human rights situation in eastern Ukraine" and calling for greater care to prevent civilian casualties in the region. While issuing a news report [press release] by the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission, which deployed to Ukraine in mid-March, Navi Pillay [official profile] urged all involved in the conflict to "bring to an end the rule of the gun and restore respect for the rule of law and human rights." The... Full Story››
Federal Judge declares DC gun law unconstitutional
[JURIST] US Federal Judge Frederick J. Scullin Jr. [official profile] on Saturday ruled that the District of Columbia law prohibiting the carrying of pistols in public is unconstitutional. It is reported [Washinton Post report] that Judge Scullin issued an order addressed to the city and police department to end the ban on firearms. However, it has been undetermined if actual notice of the ruling has been received by D.C. officials and officers. Alan Gura, the attorney for the group trying to end the ban, stated that the order "is now a decision that the city is required to follow—the idea... Full Story››