Diversity concerns prompt broad debate Gary Blankenship Senior Editor Take several lifetimes of experience, add in a generous heaping of statistics, season with some freewheeling discussions and suggestions, and simmer in the moot courtroom at St. Thomas University in Miami.But the result wasn’t designed to be a tasty morsel delicious to everyone. Rather the goal was some hard-boiled answers about how Florida’s legal profession can look more like its diverse population.“It is here we will change the future of The Florida Bar,” said MaryAnne Lukacs, welcoming participants to the Bar’s Symposium on Diversity in the Legal Profession, held April 16-17.Miami attorney Katherine Silverglate, who helped organize the symposium, presented some demographic numbers. According to the 2000 census, 78 percent of Florida’s population is white; 15 percent is African American; 3 percent is Asian-Pacific; 2 percent is multiracial; and the rest are other racial makeups. The U.S. census tracks those of Hispanic origin separately, noting they can be either of Caucasian or African origin. Their figures put the Hispanic population in Florida at around 17 percent.Twenty percent of Floridians have a disability, she said, while Matthew Dietz, chair of the Public Interest Law Section, said that figure is 29.8 percent in Miami. Those with disabilities, he added, are vastly under-represented in the legal profession and also have much higher unemployment rates than people without disabilities.On gender, 51.2 percent of the population is female, and 48.8 percent is male, Silverglate said.The Florida Bar, for legal reasons, does not collect mandatory gender and ethnic information about members, although it does voluntarily request that data, and almost 60 percent of Bar members supply it.According to those statistics, Silverglate said, 88 percent of the Bar’s membership is white; 7 percent is Hispanic; 3 percent is African American; and the rest are other races. Seventy percent are men and 30 percent are women, the latter up from 17 percent in 1986. Among young lawyers, the numbers are more diverse, she noted, with 77 percent white, 5 percent African American, 13 percent Hispanic, and the rest other races. Fifty-four percent is men, and 46 percent is women.Bar President-elect Kelly Overstreet Johnson said the Bar has faced difficulties in trying to get women and minorities involved with Bar activities, not because doors are closed, but because it has had trouble attracting applicants.“I’ve been involved in the Bar for 20-plus years. I have never found it to be anything but open and welcoming,” she said. “What I have found is it’s difficult to get other women and minorities involved in the Bar.”She noted she just completed making her committee appointments for the 2004-05 Bar year, and is also chairing the screening committee that is reviewing applicants for judicial nominating commissions around the state. In both cases, the problem was getting women and minority lawyers to apply. Johnson said she probably appointed a record number of women and minorities to committee leadership positions, but she still wanted to do better.“When I was doing my committee appointments, I did not have people apply who I could appoint. I am committed to making this a very diverse organization. But if I don’t get people to apply, what am I supposed to do?” Johnson told the symposium. “There was a deadline; we advertised; we went out and beat the bushes. Miles [Bar President Miles McGrane] sent information to minority bars. We didn’t get the applications.”McGrane noted that committee appointments showed how Bar policies can be changed to help diversity. Several years ago, the Bar Board of Governors adopted term limits for committee service, which became effective as McGrane became president. That produced many more vacancies on Bar committees, and allowed him to greatly improve diversity and Johnson to do even better.Other statistics and examples, however showed why women and minorities may be less likely to become involved in Bar activities. 11th Circuit Public Defender Bennett Brummer said his office has a higher percentage of women and minority attorneys that do private law firms. St. Thomas Law Dean Bob Butterworth, the former Florida attorney general, said when he was the state’s top legal officer his legal staff reflected Florida’s diverse population, which meant he had disproportionately more women and minority lawyers than private firms.Dinita James, president of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers, said those examples are borne out in studies that show women and minorities are more likely to have public service jobs, which pay less and don’t give time off or pay for participation in Bar activities.Those in private firms, she noted, tend to be younger lawyers who face heavy demands to produce billable hours which, after family obligations, leaves little time for Bar work.James also cited ABA and other studies that show working women are still responsible for 70 percent of household and child rearing duties; and while 44 percent of male lawyers have nonworking spouses, 84 percent of women lawyers have spouses who work full time. Women and minorities also often feel they are undervalued at private firms and given less challenging assignments and opportunities, she said, which is why they opt for public employment.Two lawyers in private practice said if firms are reluctant to hire and promote women and minorities, they are making a mistake.“I think having diversity in a law firm is good business,” said John Kocyak, a Miami attorney. “Our firm’s biggest victory was two and a half years ago when a jury awarded us over $90 million, and the first chair was a woman and the second chair was a black partner who was six months pregnant. I think the jury related to those people.”Arrayed against them were lawyers from four large firms, none of whom were women, he noted.Kocyak said his firm once made a woman a partner while she was on maternity leave and did the same for another who was, at the time, working only part-time. It did so because it recognized their abilities and saw it as an investment in retaining quality lawyers.Law firms, he added, are sometimes afraid to hire women or minorities because they fear they will be sued if that lawyer fails. Instead, they should attack the problem as lawyers do with any challenge, by carefully planning how to succeed, he said.Besides, Kocyak observed, “It’s much more interesting to be with someone who is different from you.”Lee Stapleton Milford, a partner at Baker & McKenzie, agreed diversity is good business for law firms.“General counsels at the Fortune 500 companies always ask us about diversity,” she said. “Our professional population should reflect our client list. We have a diverse population of clients in the United States, yet our lawyers don’t look like our clients. We can’t attract new clients unless we have lawyers who look like America.”Much of the discussion focused on law schools, with officials from Florida International University, St. Thomas, and Florida A&M University law schools noting they have highly diverse student populations and engaging in some good-natured bantering about who was the most diverse.But they also had some surprising data. That included that while law schools rely heavily on LSATs in determining admissions, that test is not a good predictor of law student success. It does, however, have validity in forecasting how they will do on the bar exam.That’s important for diversity because minority students still tend to score slightly less on standardized tests, such as the LSAT, than nonminority students.“There is no correlation between your LSAT score and your success as a lawyer or your ability to practice, but there is a correlation between the LSAT and the ability to pass the bar exam,” said Percy Luney, dean of the FAMU law school.Linda Harrison, an associate law professor at Nova Southeastern University, said Nova set up a special program for applicants with marginal LSATs, but who had other indicators they could succeed in law school, such as high grade-point averages. Those students are allowed to take two law school classes, either on the campus or online, and if they do well, they are admitted as regular law students.The top student in one current class year at Nova was admitted through this program, Harrison said, and it has also boosted the school minority law school enrollment by 10 percent to around a third of the students.Luney, though, said it is important to have standards because it would be unfair to admit students for three years of legal education and potentially high debt who then don’t have a realistic chance of passing the bar exam.Other discussions at the symposium included personal experiences and potential solutions. The final report is expected in a few weeks, and will be posted on the Bar’s Web site at www.flabar.org.The value of diversity was summed up by 11th Circuit Judge David Young, who is openly gay. He noted surveys that show the vast majority of law students saying diversity improved their education experience and changed their view of the criminal justice system.“If you have lunch or dinner with people who are different from you, you learn,” he said. “That is why I am a champion of diversity. We only live on this earth one time, and if we don’t learn from each other, how sad is that?” May 1, 2004 Senior Editor Regular News Diversity concerns prompt broad debate
These symptoms are usually mild andbegin gradually. Some people become infected but don’t develop any symptoms anddon’t feel unwell. Most people (about 80 percnt) recover from the diseasewithout needing special treatment. “This kind of patients mostly neededfurther management of their respiratory problems,” said Alonsabe. DOH-6 Infection Disease Unit head Dr.Mary Jane Roches Juanico said tracking severe acute respiratory infection casesin Western Visayas would start in 15 to 17 medical facilities, mostlyprovincial hospitals and some private hospitals classified as level 2 and level3. More local transmissions were recordedsince Saturday. Yesterday, DOH said the number rose to 20 already. Manycountries around the world have seen cases of COVID-19 and several have seenoutbreaks. Authorities in China and some other countries have succeeded inslowing or stopping their outbreaks. However, the situation is unpredictable socheck regularly for the latest news. Some patients may have aches andpains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. Alonsabe stressed Western Visayasremained free from COVID-19 and the tracking of severe acute respiratoryinfection cases was not new; it was done, too, when the country faced with thethreat of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003. That time, he said,cases of severe acute respiratory infection were traced to DOH’s sentinelhospitals. PROTECTIONMEASURES FOR EVERYONE Around one out of every six people whogets COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing,according to WHO. DOH on Saturday raised the Code RedSublevel 1 Alert following its confirmation of the first case of local COVID-19transmission in Metro Manila. The patient was a 59-year-old woman, the wife ofthe 62-year-old man who first tested positive for COVID-19. *Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub orwash them with soap and water.Why? Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rubkills viruses that may be on your hands. *Stay home if you feel unwell. If you have a fever, cough and difficultybreathing, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions ofyour local health authority.Why? National and local authorities will have the most up to date informationon the situation in your area. Calling in advance will allow your health careprovider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will alsoprotect you and help prevent spread of viruses and other infections. Once tracked, the patients would betested for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), according to Dr. GlennAlonsabe, DOH Region 6 epidemiologist. *Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. Thismeans covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when youcough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.Why? Droplets spread virus. By following good respiratory hygiene you protectthe people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and COVID-19. Older people, and those withunderlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems ordiabetes, are more likely to develop serious illness. People with fever, coughand difficulty breathing should seek medical attention, stressed WHO. *Keep up to date on the latest COVID-19 hotspots (cities or local areas whereCOVID-19 is spreading widely). If possible, avoid traveling to places –especially if you are an older person or have diabetes, heart or lung disease.Why? You have a higher chance of catching COVID-19 in one of these areas./PN CodeRed, Sublevel 1 is a preemptive call to ensure national and local governmentand public and private healthcare providers can prepare for possible increasein suspected and confirmed cases. It means all hospital personnel arerequired to report for duty in their respective facilities to provide medicalservices. Stayaware of the latest information on the COVID-19 outbreak, available on the WHOwebsite and through national and local public health authority. “Our level 2 and level 3 hospitals aredepartmentalized. They have the capability to really provide isolation areasand even intensive care,” said Juanico. *Maintain at least one meter (three feet) distance between yourself and anyone whois coughing or sneezing.Why? When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from theirnose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe inthe droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person coughing has thedisease. *Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth.Why? Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated,hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the viruscan enter your body and can make you sick. Accordingto WHO, you can reduce your chances of being infected or spreading COVID-19 bytaking some simple precautions: According to the World HealthOrganization (WHO), the most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tirednessand dry cough. ILOILO City – Now on Code Red Sublevel1 Alert, the Department of Health (DOH) is intensifying its tracking of severeacute respiratory infection cases in Western Visayas.
Nobody ever say Seth Rollins does not deliver every single time. What a perforrmer. #WWE #SummerSlam pic.twitter.com/kxuXhAFQKH— Scott Fishman (@smFISHMAN) August 12, 2019 Session ID: 2020-09-09:19e1b850bfa650fcf8333a5b Player Element ID: video_player_5f5847b92dd49 OK Close Modal DialogBeginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreen Karthik Nair WATCH US LIVE Last Updated: 13th August, 2019 15:11 IST Seth Rollins Slays ‘The Beast’ Again, Fans Jubilant As He Wins His Second WWE Universal Championship Seth Rollins won his second WWE Universal Championship after an outstanding win over Brock Lesnar at Summerslam which was held at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on Sunday. This was the 32nd edition of one of WWE’s most important special events which is also known as the “Biggest Party of the Summer.” LIVE TV Written By Seth Rollins Slays The Beast, AGAIN ! #SummerSlam #SummerSlam2019 pic.twitter.com/aC0D2LRArk— Rabi Siddique (@rabisiddique234) August 12, 2019 READ: Ahead Of WWE Summerslam 2019, Here Are The Five Most Memorable Moments Of The Extravaganza FOLLOW US Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00Loaded: 0%Duration 0:00Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio TrackQuality LevelsFullscreenThis is a modal window. This video is restricted from playing on your current domain Error Code: PLAYER_ERR_DOMAIN_RESTRICTED SUBSCRIBE TO US First Published: 12th August, 2019 20:43 IST COMMENT Seth Rollins won his second WWE Universal Championship after an outstanding win over Brock Lesnar at Summerslam which was held at the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on Sunday. This was the 32nd edition of one of WWE’s most important special events which is also known as the “Biggest Party of the Summer.”The Main EventIn the main event, Seth Rollins challenged Brock Lesnar for the WWE Universal Championship. Rollins had won the title from Lesnar back at Wrestlemania 35, but the ‘Beast Incarnate’ took it back when he cashed in his ‘Money In The Bank’ contract at the Extreme Rules last month. Even in this contest, the former UFC Champion completely manhandled Rollins with some brutal blows. Not only during the contest but even in the lead up to the event, the ‘Beast’ had done a lot of damage to the former member of ‘The Shield’. Lesnar, who became the youngest ever WWE Champion back in Summerslam 2002 was constantly targetting Rollins’ injured ribs. Nonetheless, ‘The Architect’ had the last laugh with a frog splash to Lesnar through an announce table, followed by 2 Curb Stomps to pick up the win. Believe it or not but as soon as Rollins emerged triumphant, he received thunderous applause from the crowd. Surprisingly, the same crowd was booing him when Lesnar was all over for him and he was hardly putting up a fight. READ: John Cena Has A Special Message For The WWE Family Ahead Of Summerslam 2019. Here’s What He SaidFans congratulate Seth Rollins for slaying ‘The Beast’This was indeed a huge win for Rollins because after all, he had defeated Brock Lesnar who is arguably the strongest athlete of all time. After Rollins won his second WWE Universal Championship, he was hailed by one and all for his outstanding win.Here are some of the tweets: