College's 12th Annual Law And Society Week Explores Race, The Environment and Silence in The Law, Feb. 25 - March 4

PHILADELPHIA, February 23, 2011—Join us for the 12th annual Law and Society Week presented by the Fox Rothschild Center for Law and Society at Community College of Philadelphia.

Law and Society Week offers informative sessions and lectures hosted by the College’s faculty, and other professionals in the fields of law and justice. This annual examination of the intersection between the legal system and the citizens it serves is an educational experience for students, the College family, professionals in the legal arena and the general public.

As part of the week’s events, the Center for Law and Society will continue to examine “Shh!: Silence and the Law”, a multi-year focus on the many dimensions of witness intimidation and its impact on society. Law and Society events qualify for continuing legal education credits.

In one “Shh!” event, a coterie of local crime reporters will discuss their profession and how the social stigma attached to “snitching” affects crime coverage. Panelists include Vernon Odom, Channel 6 Action News; Walt Hunter, CBS 3 Eyewitness News; Larry Miller, The Philadelphia Tribune; Jen Colletta, Philadelphia Gay News; and moderator William Colarulo, newly appointed Radnor Township police superintendent, formerly of the Philadelphia Police Department. “Silence and the Reporter’s Challenge” is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 12:20 p.m., Tuesday, March 1, Room BG-10 in the Bonnell Building on 17th Street, between Spring Garden and Callowhill streets.

Other Law and Society Week highlights include:

  • The Black Male Dilemma in the Criminal Justice System, Part 1 - from the Community Perspective: A Shh! Event, 12:30 p.m. - 1:50 p.m., Monday, Feb. 28, Room C 2-28, on the second floor of the Center for Business and Industry, 18th and Callowhill streets - This panel will address the realities of prejudice and discrimination within the criminal justice system, particularly issues that black males encounter in the system. Panel participants will include: State Rep. Kenyatta Johnson; Curtis Clark, principal of the Pennypack House School in Northeast Philadelphia; Dr. Damone B. Jones Sr., senior pastor, Bible Way Baptist Church in West Philadelphia; and John Yah-Ya Phillips, an ex-offender and legislative assistant to State Rep. Ronald Waters. The moderator will be Loraine Ballard Morrill of Clear Channel Radio.
  • The Black Male Dilemma in the Criminal Justice System, Part 2 -- from the Legal Perspective: A Shh! Event, 12:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m., Tuesday, March 1, Room S2-19  – Panel participants will include: U.S. District Court Judge C. Darnell Jones II; Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams; Chad Lassiter, adjunct professor for the Graduate School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania, and co-founder and president of the Black Men at Penn School of Social Work, Inc.; Steven Johnson, deputy commissioner of Internal Affairs, Philadelphia Police; and Charles Cunningham, Esq., first assistant defender with the Defender Association of Philadelphia. Loraine Ballard Morrill of Clear Channel will moderate the panel. Join in this provocative discussion as the panelists analyze the myths and realities concerning black males in the criminal justice system.
  • The Judges’ Panel, 12:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m., Thursday, March 3, Room S2-19 – A group of distinguished judges will discuss the challenges of a legal career, and how to achieve balance between their personal lives and the law.
  • Mass Murder on Philadelphia's Main Line? The Mystery of Duffy's Cut, 2 p.m. to 3:20 p.m., Thursday, March 3, Room S2-19 - Brothers William and Frank Watson tell of their six-year search to solve the mystery of 57 Irish immigrants who arrived in the Philadelphia area to work on the Pennsylvania railroad in 1832 and died of unknown causes eight weeks later. Join the discussion of the ongoing historical, archaeological and forensic search into their lives and possibly violent deaths.

The week offers something for everyone from lectures and presentations, to student voices, legal resources, films, plays and so much more! Unless otherwise indicated, all events are free and open to the public.

A complete schedule of Law and Society Week activities can be found at: