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Deena Hurwitz, third from left, directs the International Human Rights Clinic (pictured) and Human Rights Program.
Deena Hurwitz, third from left, directs the International Human Rights Clinic (pictured) and Human Rights Program.

Human Rights Clinic Has Busy First Semester

In its first semester, the Law School’s new International Human Rights Law Clinic, under the guidance of new Human Rights Program Director Deena Hurwitz, had nine students working on six projects. Hurwitz selected projects that provided variety, allowed students the opportunity to work with well-known, influential non-government organizations (NGOs); and would have a practical application or role in an actual advocacy strategy:

In addition to these main projects, the Clinic assisted Joe Margulies, lead counsel in the case of Al Odah v. United States — the “Guantanamo case”— on the main brief to the Supreme Court. Al Odah is a case of historic importance, questioning the government’s right in time of war to detain people indefinitely, without charges, and without recourse to legal process. Although the timing was challenging (during exam period), a small group of students volunteered to do research, providing an exceptional opportunity for them to be involved in a cutting edge legal issue.

Hurwitz joined the faculty in 2003 as director of the human rights program and the International Human Rights Law Clinic. From 2000–2003, Hurwitz was the Robert M. Cover/Allard K. Lowenstein Fellow in International Human Rights with the Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights at Yale Law School. While at Yale she supervised the law school’s human rights clinic, coordinated events sponsored by the Schell Center, and taught International Human Rights at Yale College.

Hurwitz has lined up a number of speakers and events for the spring semester and will also co-sponsor public events with many of the speakers Law School Professor Rosa Brooks has invited for her human rights course.

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