Legal Aid Chief Attorney And Staff Attorneys Participate In Roundtable Discussion On NYPD's Stop And Frisk Policy At New York Law School Led By Councilmember Rose

Last night, Steven Banks, The Legal Aid Society's Attorney-in-Chief, and Gregory Coleman and Lia Rodriguez, Society Staff Attorneys in the Staten Island and Bronx Criminal Defense Offices, respectively, participated in a roundtable discussion on the NYPD's stop and frisk policy at New York Law School. The roundtable discussion was convened by Councilmember Debi Rose, who is the Chair of the New York City Council's Civil Rights Committee.

As front-line Legal Aid staff, Coleman and Rodriguez described the experiences of substantial numbers of Legal Aid clients who are subjected every day to unlawful stops, frisks and arrests. Banks described the class action lawsuits on which Society staff members are working to prevent unlawful arrests of New York City Housing Authority tenants and their guests who are allegedly trespassing in NYCHA developments and to stop unlawful marijuana arrests. He also described the collateral consequences of unlawful arrests, including potential eviction from NYCHA apartments, loss of employment, loss of educational loans and benefits, and deportation.

Deborah Wright, President of the Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW, helped to organize the presentation at the roundtable.