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Release: Immediate


Release: Immediate

UI College of Law recognizes First Monday with film, death penalty panel discussion

IOWA CITY, Iowa --The University of Iowa College of Law will join other law schools nationwide in celebrating First Monday, a national program of law schools, colleges and universities, and public interest activists who work to promote social justice and civil liberties.

From 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 5, in the fourth-floor student lounge at the Boyd Law Building, a film by two-time Academy Award winning filmmaker Barbara Kopple, will be shown. The film addresses immigration rights and narrates the story of a prisoner facing the death penalty and his fight for adequate legal representation. The film will be followed by a three-member panel discussion on domestic rights as human rights.

The film and panel discussion are free and are open to the public.

The panel members are Barbara Schwartz, UI law professor who specializes in immigration law, Bruce Nestor, an Iowa City attorney who performs volunteer legal work on the death penalty, and a UI law student.

Lois Cox, UI law professor, says the timing of the film's showing is significant.

"It's important to recognize the contributions of lawyers who work in the public interest and the need for more lawyers to represent clients who can't afford to pay for legal services," Cox says.

"The first Monday in October has been adopted as the appropriate time to recognize the importance of public interest law," Cox says.

First Monday, so-named to coincide with the day that the U.S. Supreme Court begins its session after summer recess, is a program of the Alliance for Justice, a national association of environmental, civil rights, mental health, women's, children's and consumer advocacy organizations.

The film and topic are in keeping with the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The UI College of Law and UI International Programs are co-sponsors of Global Focus: Human Rights '98, a year-long commemoration of the declaration.