Category Archives: Uncategorized
Check out this great video made by the students who participated in Universal Justice’s 2013 trip to the Dominican Republic. It documents and discusses the ongoing struggle of Dominican persons of Haitian descent, a topic which is all the more pressing in light of the recent ruling from DR’s Supreme Court revoking the citizenship of Dominicans born after 1929 whose parents aren’t Dominican.
In order to help all those 1L’s who are up late putting the finishing touches on (or just actually starting to write) their Long Memos, Universal Justice is putting on its Waffles n’ Wiches fundraiser.
Come grab a delicious waffle or sandwich from the UJ station in the law school cafeteria and power through the night!
Sunday, November 17th, 2013
From 6:00PM to Midnight
Waffles = $3
Unlimited toppings = $1 extra
‘Wiches = $2
This past Monday, September 23th, the Constitutional Court (CC) of the Dominican Republic issued a sentence that denies Dominican nationality to anyone born in the country whose parents were undocumented at the time of their registration of birth. The ruling will affect anyone born in the country since 1929. Essentially, the State will strip nationality from four generations of people who during eight decades were registered as Dominicans under the Constitution and existing laws.
This ruling, in violation of at least fifteen articles of the Dominican Constitution, is using racial discrimination to deny nationality. It will affect thousands of Dominicans of diverse origins, especially those of Haitian descent whom the State has already been stripping of Dominican identity documents since 2007.
If you do not agree with this ruling, we ask for your support by taking one of the following actions:
- Share this message on your Facebook wall attached to this video: http://youtu.be/izSLTrTaKRk
- Use the hashtag #EsoNoSeHaceRD y #SentenciaTC to foster discussion on Twitter
- Join us in solidarity during our public demonstrations to be held in the next few days
- Sign our online petition at (english version available): https://secure.avaaz.org/es/petition/Evitar_el_despojo_de_la_nacionalidad_y_garantizar_los_DDHH_de_dominicanosas_de_ascendencia_haitiana_en_Rep_Dominicana/?copy
- Send the message below to the President of the Dominican Republic (email@example.com) with a copy to the Constitutional Court (firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com)
Mr. Danilo Medina, President of the Dominican Republic
We ask you to protect Dominicans affected by the ruling of the Constitutional Court, declaring that the rights that they have acquired and that are enshrined in the Constitution and international agreements signed by the country cannot be violated.
Stripping Dominican nationality from thousands born to migrant parents violates fifteen articles of the Constitution, subjects the country to international sanctions, and most importantly, exacerbates the exclusion of thousands of people who remain without nationality, documentation or legal status.
Mr. President, I Do Not Support the Ruling of TC
You can also follow some of the organizations fighting against the Ruling on Twitter @CentroBono, @reconoci_do, @mudhalegal, @MOSCTHA, @CEDAIL, @CNDHrd.
We are counting on you to stop this injustice.
On Thursday, March 28th, Universal Justice’s Dominican Republic project was featured in the New York Law Journal.
To view the entire article online, visit this link to the New York Law Journal website.
Kilawan, a 3L, said she was struck by the plight of a 21-year-old Dominican woman.
“This individual does have a Dominican birth certificate, but without a cedula, she cannot attend university, nor can she get legally married, nor can she apply for formal employment,” Kilawan said. “She explained that the only thing she holds on to is hope.”
Hello Supporters of Universal Justice!
We just returned from the Dominican Republic and are happy to report that our trip went exceedingly well.
We were able to visit various organizations who do meaningful work in the country to benefit marginalized communities of Dominicans of Haitian descent. We started the week with an informational session by CEO Ulrick Gaillard at Batey Relief Alliance’s office. Among many important topics discussed, Ulrick detailed the grassroots work that BRA does to promote community economic development in the bateys.
Later in the week, we met with Allison Petrozziello and Eddy Tejeda of the Observatory Migrants of the Caribbean (OBMICA), a social science think tank and research facility in the Dominican Republic. A researcher and an attorney respectively, Allison and Eddy gave us a detailed overview of the major legal milestones which led up to the current human rights issue of statelessness among Dominicans of Haitian descent.
Our meeting with OBMICA was particularly helpful in framing the rest of the week. We attended portions of a three-day long protest in front of the Junta Central Electoral by stateless young Dominicans of Haitian descent who have joined the Reconoci.do movement. Centro Bonó, an organization committed to justice for the most impoverished and excluded in the Dominican Republic, played a pivotal role in mobilizing individuals from various villages to pariticipate in the protest.
Paola Pelletier of Centro Bonó liaised with Universal Justice so that members of our team could interview those affected, chronicling their personal stories of injustice at the hands of the state. In the coming weeks, the UJ DR team will be working on a short film, including footage of many of the stories we gathered at the protest.
In addition to our involvement with the issue of statelessness throughout the entire duration of the trip, we were also able to visit Mata Los Indios, the batey where Universal Justice has a long-standing relationship. In Mata, we connected with the elders of the community and developed a list of potential projects based on Mata’s immediate needs.
While we develop an advocacy campaign against statelessness in the Dominican Republic via a short film and report, we will also work towards identifying a sustainable project we can initiate for the people of Mata Los Indios.
We extend our thanks to all of the organizations and individuals who made our trip so worthwhile and look forward to continued partnership.
We are excited to keep this momentum so do look out for our short film and report coming soon!
Aminta Kilawan on behalf of the entire UJ DR 2013 Team
A message from Adam Pullano: I love your outline, baby. I need a little something to relieve some stress during exams. Be my Chief Justice and grant cert to this appeal (for hot, hot loving). If you feel the same way (and want to join me for some Rule 19 (Joinder of Parties), bid highly and I’ll show you a good hornbook.
Austen Ishii is the cartoonist for the Fordham Law Record. His hobbies include New York Area job fairs, silently walking up behind people, and blogging about his dumpster diving adventures. Turnoffs include awkward silences and laws. Austen is first cousins with Modern Family’s Sophia Vergara.
David Harvey first appeared in the early 80s. When David Harvey was a janitor at Fordham Law, a professor left an impossible legal question on the board overnight, and only David Harvey could solve it. Granted admission on the spot, he is one of our most promising students. David Harvey once drove a car to Mongolia. David Harvey once almost got a tattoo one time but didn’t. He still has other tattoos though. Some say David Harvey is a ghost, but those people are wrong. David enjoys thrift shopping, commuting on the L train, and urban camping. Turn offs include dancing and kids who won’t get off his lawn.
Edgar can fell a tree in one stroke, and turn it into a beautiful piece of furniture in less than three hours. He can run or swim a mile in 5 minutes flat. He excels at every sport. He raises and butchers his own meat, but being so humble and modest, will probably not cook for you on your date. Instead, he will take you out for the best meal of your life. He can’t wait to meet you.
If the Statue of Liberty were to become a 6’1”, 220 lb, 22 year old cast-iron male, George Rhein would be that statue. George leads a busy life, juggling his schoolwork and his lifelong crusade to vanquish tyranny– and yet he still makes time for friends and fun. Indeed he is a man of many masks. The Swiss Army knife of people. He has personally abated every natural disaster since July 7th, 1990. Only the Liberty Bell rings louder and truer than George’s remarkably steady heartbeat. When George isn’t punishing warlords he enjoys operettas and taming frothy beasts. His life hasn’t been all popsicles, though – he was tormented as a lad by his inadvertent tendency to seduce older women. Since then he has found solace in being thrice crowned Earth’s #1 Most Fancy Man. His favorite memory is when God once visited him in a dream, and they shook hands. Turnoffs include detours and white belts.
Kelvin Collado was voted Fordham’s Most Eligible Bachelor two years in a row. He has front row tickets to every Jets, Mets, Giants, and Yankees game, and bottle service at every club. Jay-Z is his godfather and the two can often be seen hanging out together in Brooklyn. Kelvin is looking for a woman with a car, a beautiful face, and maybe a nice personality.
Linda Ann Jordan has an identical twin at Fordham Law. The two are known for their mischievousness, often getting into and out of comedic scrapes because of their identical looks. Linda, however, unlike her twin, is not possessed by an evil demon. Linda enjoys Brooklyn, craft beers, bacon cupcakes, and ironic bands. She hates being called a hipster.
Four out of five dentists agree that Lisa Vasnani is pretty swell. Lisa hails from Chicago, a city she considers pretty great but a clear step down from New York. Each week, Lisa bakes three times her body weight in cake, making her a good person to know. She is also an excellent photographer. If you know what I mean. She is an avid Cubs and/or White Sox fan. She would like to assure potential suitors that she is not a robot sent from the future to Kill. John. Connor. Lisa enjoys spirited discussion, the fiction oeuvre of Bill O’Reilly, and turning into totally awesome liquid metal when damaged but reconstituting into an unstoppable robot. Turn offs include golf.
Michelle “La Rodilla” Gonzalez is hot like fire. To her allies and foes alike, she declares, “All I do is win, win, win.” She further declares that “All I do is win, win, win” is a registered copyright of We the Best Music Group. Michelle Gonzalez still thinks Pluto is a planet, but is not so sure about Neptune. Her favorite emoji include the panda face, the sweat drops, and the camel. She enjoys a quick wit, fine food, and men who drive Chevys. Turn offs include skin on pudding and the laughter of children.
Before coming to law school, Nita Narayan was a dietician to the stars. She is the inventor of such fad diets as “The Asparagus Diet,” “the Ozark Diet,” and the “Nails! All you eat is nails!” Since her abrupt exit from the medical profession, Nita has become one of Fordham’s most beloved students, lighting up Fordham with her trademark smile and charming Cockney accent. Nita enjoys TV on DVD, vegetarianism, and T-shirts. Turn offs include garbage, sadness.
Universal Justice’s highest ranked couple, Kali L. Peterson and Jeremy Rothstein enjoy long walks on the beach, but not with each other. Kali writes novels under the pseudonym E.L. James. Jeremy is totally not made up; you just haven’t met him because he lives in Canada. Historians disagree as to how they met, but there is strong evidence of foul play. Kali and Jeremy like Nita, Dave, Lisa, and Michelle. Turnoffs include ATTICA!!!!!!!!
Prescott Loveland is the nicest person in the universe. He will hold your hair after a long night at Lincoln Park, send you his notes if you miss class, and print double-sided to save the environment. In addition, he plans to devote his life to juvenile justice. He wants you to know that you are uniquely special to him, and he’s really looking forward to hanging out with you. He will almost certainly wear a vest on your date.
Robbie Auray is a natural blonde. He used to be a surfer in Maui, until encountering a swarm of sharks. None of the sharks survived, but Robbie has not been back in the water since. He does not need to bathe, as he is naturally spring breeze scented. His skills include egg frying, pool shooting, snow running, playlist assembling, smoothie making, backgammon losing, and beer opening. Turn offs include backgammon.
Scott Silverberg is a 3L making the most of his remaining time here at Fordham. He enjoys karaoke, cooking, puppies, and sunsets. Scott has spent his time at Fordham finding the easiest classes to take and the most private areas of the library. A night with this stud to help support human rights will give a whole new meaning to the phrase pro bono.
The date will include: Dinner at a fine New York City restaurant followed by any of the great activities this wonderful city has to offer. Ice Skating? I’m there. Live music at a jazz club downtown? I’m all for it. A stroll through Riverside Park to watch the sunset? That’s one of my favorite things. When you have me for a night, the options are endless.
P.S. – I cook a great breakfast.
Before coming to law school, Sofia Linarte spent four years living with a tribe of anthropologists. She also co-starred in the 2004 direct-to-video film, “Cruel Intentions 3.” Her state bird is the red-tufted warbler. Sofia resides in Staten Island with her cats, Harry, X-Tina, Tim the Cat, Richard Nixon, $oy $auce, and Harry. Sofia enjoys music, television, and movies. Turnoffs include homonyms and secondary colors.
Whitney Costin is originally from LA. When she was 14, she became P-Diddy’s dog walker, which led to write her first bestselling novel, “Dog Widdy: A Love Story.” She has gone on to a glittering career as a fiction author, generating a rivalry with Stephen King that Mr. King takes very personally after Whitney taunted him onstage at the Fiction Writers of America awards in 2010. Whitney led this year’s winter UJ trip to Nicaragua.
UJ was honored to have MOSCTHA at Fordham Law today. MOSCTHA has worked with our group in the Dominican Republic on issues related to the unique plight of Haitian-Dominicans and their Dominican-born children. Their current campaign, Break the Silence, seeks to build awareness about statelessness. In efforts to “Break The Silence” MOSCTHA exhibited gripping images and told personal stories of those who struggle with statelessness.
Check out MOSCTHA’s website here!