Today, the U.S. Department of Education announced that it was rescinding its 2011 Dear Colleague Letter on Sexual Violence and its 2014 Questions and Answers on Sexual Violence, and issued a Questions and Answers on Campus Sexual Misconduct while noting that it intends to engage in formal rule-making on the topic. Attorney Naomi Shatz spoke to Inside Higher Ed about the interim regulations. The article can be found here.
Last week, Education Secretary Betsy Devos announced she would be revisiting Title IX guidance for colleges and universities. Attorneys O’Meara-Costello and Shatz spoke to Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly about their experience representing complainants and accused students under current campus Title IX procedures, and reflect on what changes these proposed revisions may bring. Read the article here.
In an article published last week in the Boston Bar Journal, Ruth O’Meara Costello and David Rangaviz write about recent decisions in the Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) regarding search-and-seizure law that address digital searches and the seizure of electronic data, as well as race relations in the context of police encounters. In the article, available here, Ruth and David discuss how, with these decisions, the SJC is both raising the bar for evidence required to justify digital search-and-seizures and also recognizing how racial bias plays a role in criminal practice and procedure
Norman Zalkind and Naomi Shatz spoke to Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly about recent cases alleging violations of students’ rights in Title IX processes at colleges and universities. They highlighted the firm’s more than 40 years of representing students in disputes with their universities, and discussed the firm’s particular expertise in representing students involved in sexual misconduct proceedings. Read the article here.
Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly dives into the past of our founding partner, Norman Zalkind, highlighting his history of “going to the edge” to fight for his clients. His upbringing combined with some unexpected job pursuits helped build the foundation for his success as an attorney, which took off during the Civil Rights and anti-Vietnam eras. Our firm couldn’t be more proud of Norman, his accomplishments, and his longstanding passion for defending the rights of the accused. Read the article here.
In an August 20, 2014 article for Forbes Attorney Harvey Silverglate, who is of counsel to Zalkind Duncan & Bernstein, argues against increasingly intrusive federal indictments of state politicians, which occurs absent fair notice to state officials that their commonly accepted (or at least long-tolerated) actions are considered crimes carrying multi-decade prison sentences. Mr. Silverglate argues that the recent rash of prosecutions against state officials in Massachusetts, Virginia, Illinois and elsewhere, on the basis of prosecutors’ broad readings of vague federal anti-fraud statutes, calls for the intervention of the U.S. Supreme Court to stem prosecutorial overreach. The article, which explores themes also discussed in Mr. Silverglate’s book Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent [Encounter Books, 2nd edition 2011] can be read here.