Beyond the Bench 23 - Wednesday, December 2, 2015


Martin Hoshino, Administrative Director, Judicial Council of California

How Collaboration Works and Wins
Sade Daniels, Writer and Youth Advocate, Bay Area Youth Centers

Doing Whatever It Takes: Mental Health Leadership for Integrated Systems of Care
Hon. Stephen V. Manley, Judge of the Superior of California, County of Santa Clara
Hon. Darrell Steinberg, President pro Tem of the California Senate (Ret.); Founder, Steinberg Institute

This TEDx event brought together correctional staff, inmates, innovative thinkers, and influential people from various spheres to create a useful dialogue about the impacts of incarceration at the Ironwood State Prison in Blythe, California. Video selections from the event will be screened.

Christopher Grewe, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, American Prison Data Systems, PBC
Millicent Tidwell, Chief Operating Officer, Judicial Council of California

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The benefits of support dogs in courthouses have attracted widespread attention. Courts across the country are bringing dogs into their courtrooms to comfort victims, witnesses, and other court users during legal proceedings. Different courts are exploring different models. Come meet some of these amazing animals.

San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office
Dozer, Facility Dog, Victorville courthouse, with handler Yesica Cioli
Lupe, Facility Dog, San Bernardino courthouse, with handler Don Ross

Superior Court of California, County of Trinity
Cindy Van Schooten, PhD, Court Executive Officer
Miles, Support Dog, Weaverville courthouse

Concurrent Workshops 1
1:45 - 3:15 P.M.

This workshop will seek to demystify adoptions by simplifying the Who, What, When, Why, and How of these different processes. Through collaboration with the Department of Social Services, attorneys, and judges, this workshop will have information for all professionals who are involved with adoptions or who wish to embark in the area of adoption law. This workshop seeks to enhance the “user experience” while ensuring the best interests of the children. Topics will include : An Overview of Different Types of Adoptions, Understanding Parental Status and the Termination of Parental Rights Process, Applicable Fees, Different Investigatory Processes, Roles and Responsibilities of Public and Private Adoption Agencies, Adoption Assistance Program, and Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children. 

Hon. Denine J. Guy, Assistant Presiding Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Santa Cruz
Kelly Lynn Beck, Attorney and Trainer/Consultant, National Institute for Permanent Family Connectedness,
            Seneca Family of Agencies

Julie Pickens, MSW, Adoptions Supervisor, California Department of Social Services
Beth Wrightson, LCSW, Adoptions Supervisor, California Department of Social Services


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Students will hear from a panel of former Capital Fellows who participated in the LegiSchool Project about
their experience working in the three branches of government. This interactive discussion on how our state
legislative process works will inform students why it is so important that no single branch of government
should have too much power. The LegiSchool Project is a civic education collaboration between California
State University, Sacramento, and the California Legislature.

Hon. David S. Wesley, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles
Henry Castillo, District Representative for California Senator Connie M. Leyva
Kristen Torres Pawling, Associate Regional Planner, Southern California Association of Governments
Suzie Townsend, Analyst, Superior Court of California, County of San Bernardino


This workshop will present various approaches to unification and coordination beyond one family/one judge
and efforts underway in California to produce custody orders out of dependency court that provide
information parents and family courts may need if the case makes its way to family court. The workshop will
also provide information on recent changes to custody order forms.

Hon. Colleen M. Nichols, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Placer
Hon. Shawna M. Schwarz, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara

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Access to safe and affordable housing has become increasingly difficult for many families to sustain. Unsafe or inaccessible housing, unlawful discrimination in housing, and the inability to afford rent are common issues facing California families. This workshop will explore common housing law issues, the impact on California families and children, and strategies for assisting families by identifying appropriate housing law referrals.

William Kennedy, Director, Race Equity Project
Karlo Ng, Attorney, National Housing Law Project
Gillian Sonnad, Supervising Attorney, Central California Legal Services
Kyanna Williams, Attorney, Judicial Council, Center for Families, Children & the Courts

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LGBT youth are at high risk for multiple negative health and social outcomes, including suicide, substance
abuse, and homelessness. Compelling research from the Family Acceptance Project shows that family
rejection contributes to serious health problems and conflict that leads to homelessness and involvement in
the foster care and juvenile justice systems. And increasing family support can help protect against risk,
promote well-being and increase permanency. This panel will present the latest evidence-based approaches
and materials to help socially and religiously conservative families to support their LGBT children. In addition
to the research, the panelists will present case studies illustrating how these intervention strategies have
produced positive outcomes for at-risk LGBT youth, possibly including one described in a short film. Ways to
prevent family conflict also will be discussed, and participants will receive best practice resources for working
with LGBT youth and families.

Caitlin Ryan, PhD, ACSW, Director, Family Acceptance Project, San Francisco State University
Rob Waring, Staff Attorney, East Bay Children’s Law Offices
Shannan Wilber, Youth Policy Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights

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While most people working in the juvenile law field have heard of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of
Children (ICPC) and the Interstate Compact for Juveniles (ICJ), not many know what the compacts actually
require. And even fewer know which to apply when a case seems to implicate both compacts. In this session,
attendees will learn the general requirements of the ICPC and the ICJ, discuss which compact applies in crossover
cases, and apply the compacts to various hypothetical scenarios.

Michael Farmer, Deputy Compact Administrator, Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of
Juvenile Justice

Bruce Rudberg, Supervisor & ICPC Coordinator, Riverside County Department of Public Social Services

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Whether you are building a courthouse near a cornfield or in the center of a metropolis, how the courthouse
is designed affects the experience of its users. This session will discuss how, by implementing small and large
innovations, we can maximize convenience, save court users time, decrease some of the stress associated
with court visits, and provide court administrators and justice partners flexibility in serving the public.

Clifford Ham, Principal Architect, Judicial Council, Capital Program


Recent research has demonstrated that foster youth in California’s schools experience a significant
achievement gap in comparison to their peers, and often fail to graduate. This workshop will highlight two
innovative approaches to improving educational outcomes for foster youth with improved communication and
regular data and information sharing between child welfare, education, and caregivers and families: Foster
Focus and FosterEd. The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) is the administrator of the Foster
Focus data system, which is currently used in 27 counties across California. Foster Focus features case
management tools and education-related reports that can be easily shared with the child welfare agency. In
Sacramento County, SCOE provides an Education Progress Summary to the social worker prior to each court
hearing. Social workers also have access to view a student's record in Foster Focus at any time. FosterEd is a
project of the National Center for Youth Law that partners with local education, child welfare, and judicial
agencies to implement a continuous cycle of data-driven interventions. The FosterEd model has three key
components: identification of and support for educational champions, development and monitoring of an
education team to support a student, and individualized education plans based on the strengths and needs of
each student. In this workshop, these innovative approaches will be presented with an emphasis on their
ability to improve educational outcomes for foster youth.

Patricia Kennedy, Director, Foster Youth Services, Sacramento County Office of Education
Casey Schutte, Director, FosterEd: California
Bridget Stumpf, Project Specialist, Technical Services, Foster Youth Services, Sacramento County
         Office of Education

Rule 5.651. Educational and developmental-services decision-making rights

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This workshop will review the history of caseflow management in family cases in
California, the history of the courts’ attitudes toward self-represented litigants and the courts’ role with respect to them, the initial implementation of rule 5.83 of the California Rules of Court and a suggested long-range approach to the rule’s implementation that takes advantage of the capabilities of current technology.

Hon. Donna Groman, Judge, Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles (Moderator)
Ms. Lily Anderson, MSW, Step-Up Program, King County Department of Judicial Administration
Mr. Gregory Routt, M.A., Coordinator, Step-Up Program, King County Department of Judicial Administration
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Panelists will discuss ways of keeping children and youth out of the courtroom, with a focus on Restorative Justice court diversion programs that are holding young people accountable and reducing recidivism rates. Included in the discussion will be implementation of a court diversion program; types of crimes that can be diverted; case studies; research; and impact.

Hon. Donna Quigley Groman, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles
Ruth Cusick, Staff Attorney, Public Counsel
Schoene Mahmood, Restorative Justice Specialist, Center for Urban Resilience, Loyola Marymount University

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As awareness increases and new information becomes available about the long-term physical, mental, and
emotional impacts of military service in theaters of conflict, courts of all types are becoming more sensitive to
the unique needs of those who have served in the military as well as the impact of that service on children and
families. Throughout California, special programs focusing on serving veterans and active service members
have become increasingly common and veterans’ courts, in particular, are creating collaborative responses to
cases wherein mental health and substance abuse issues need to be addressed with the goal of improving
outcomes for veterans and/or active service members. Serving these court users may mean creating special
mentor programs, forming new partnerships, and being innovative in addressing the needs of veterans of all
ages and their active service counterparts. The “lessons learned” from these programs and collaborations can
inspire others to look at traditional service models in new ways.

Hon. Eileen C. Moore, Associate Justice, California Court of Appeal, Fourth District
Hon. Joe T. Perez, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Orange
Steve Binder, Deputy Public Defender, San Diego Office of the Primary Public Defender

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This workshop is designed to inform a statewide audience about the new mandated national system for assessing child welfare and probation practice. The system will be implemented in each county in California as part of the national review of practice and will become a permanent component of continuous quality improvement in child welfare. Too frequently information about national measurement of child welfare and child protection practice (including juvenile probation) is not shared broadly with the public or stakeholders. Judges, attorneys, probation officers, and social workers will learn how their community is assessed on measures of safety, permanency, and well-being, and how to be involved in the quality improvement process.

Hon. Joanne M. Brown (Ret.), Commissioner of the Superior Court of California, County of Alameda
Susan Brooks, MSW, Director,Northern California Training Academy, UC Davis Extension
Dave McDowell, PhD, Chief of Performance and Program Improvement, Children and Family Services Division, California Department of Social Services

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Structured Decision Making (SDM) is a validated risk assessment tool utilized by child welfare workers in most California counties. It is mandated and discoverable, but many practicing attorneys do not ever see these tools, and when they do, they do not understand how to interpret results. Using the publically available SDM manual, this workshop will provide a detailed overview of SDM and help guide attorneys through the various SDM tools.

Margo M. Hinson, MSW, Coordinator, UC Davis Northern California Training & Research Academy
David Meyers, Attorney; Chief Operating Officer, Dependency Legal Services; and Principal Shareholder, Law Office of David Meyers

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In recent years, the Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) experienced tremendous change. This session will describe changes in policies and practices that led to DJJ’s reform and its current youth population. Additional topics of discussion will include the current assessments, interventions, education, mental health treatment, and re-entry services provided by DJJ. Also learn about DJJ’s programming from a youth’s perspective. This session will conclude with a discussion on the sustainability of the reforms and where the next decade may
take the system.

Hon. Allan D. Hardcastle, Judge, Superior Court of California, County of Sonoma
Barry Krisberg, PhD, Director, Research and Policy, Earl Warren Institute on Law and Policy, UC Berkeley
Mike Minor, Director, Division of Juvenile Justice, Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
Louie Chagolla, Intern, Anti-Recidivism Coalition (ARC); Student, Mission College


A spike in juvenile crime in the 1990s and the myth of the “juvenile superpredator” culminated in the passage of tough-on-crime laws like Proposition 21 in March 2000. Proposition 21 resulted in harsher sentences for juvenile offenders and a shift away from rehabilitation to punishment. Meanwhile, the myth of the juvenile superpredator has been debunked and recent scientific research on adolescent brain development has reinvigorated the focus on rehabilitation. Join us as we consider whether it is time to revisit the mandates of Proposition 21 and discuss what reforms are needed.

Hon. Patricia Bresee (Ret.), Consultant, Trainer, Retired Juvenile Court Commissioner
Sue Burrell, Staff Attorney, Youth Law Center, San Francisco
Matthew R. Golde, Assistant District Attorney, County of Alameda
Philip Kader, Chief Probation Officer, Contra Costa County Probation Department

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How can we offer more usable and user-friendly legal services? How can we better meet the needs of the families that come into our system? In this workshop, we will employ a user-centered design process developed at the Stanford Design School to reimagine how we engage lay people with our services, and begin to prototype and test promising new concepts. This will be a hands-on session, aiming to equip participants with new tools from the world of design thinking and agile development, as well as to jump-start new initiatives for improving current services or creating new projects.

Margaret Hagan, Fellow, Center on the Legal Profession, Stanford Law School; Lecturer, Stanford Institute of  Design

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Concurrent Workshops 2
3:30 - 5:00 P.M.

This session will discuss the most common questions on eligibility, benefits, housing, and more! The session will also explore best practice tips, including a Q&A.

Brian Blalock, Staff Attorney, Bay Area Legal Aid
Angie Schwartz, Attorney and Policy Director, Alliance for Children’s Rights

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Research has demonstrated that exclusionary disciplinary practices are disproportionately imposed on students of color, disabled students, and LGBT students. The consequences of these disciplinary practices can include academic failure and a greater likelihood of becoming involved in the juvenile justice system. This workshop will introduce participants to a set of tools that can be used to analyze discipline data for disparities, identify the root causes of those disparities, and prepare an action plan to address them going forward.

David Osher, Vice President, Institute Fellow, and Senior Advisor, American Institutes for Research (AIR)

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Representing a group of siblings can present a number of complicating issues. The presenters will review the state of the law and work through a number of scenarios to assist participants in developing best practices to analyze and address sibling relationships and potential conflicts of interest.

Andrew Cain, Supervising Attorney, Legal Advocates for Children and Youth, San Jose
Jennifer Kelleher Cloyd, Directing Attorney, Legal Advocates for Children and Youth, San Jose

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The workshop is intended to highlight the common areas of challenges or barriers that tribal communities and partner agencies encounter when working together on many facets of ICWA. The presenters will also discuss models of best practice in relation to training, communication, and outreach and describe various collaborations throughout the state that have promoted positive relations between tribal communities and partner agencies.

Liz Elgin DeRouen, ICWA Advocate, Indian Child and Family Preservation Program, Santa Rosa
Karen Gunderson, MSW, Chief, Child and Youth Permanency Branch, California Department of Social Service
Paulie Hawthorne, Social Worker, Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation (formerly Smith River Rancheria) Community and
       Family Services

Tom Lidot, Training Manager, Tribal STAR

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This session summarizes new case law relevant to dependency and provides an overview of significant appellate and state Supreme Court cases.

Hon. Amy M. Pellman, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles
Hon. Anthony A. Trendacosta, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles

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Facility-wide positive behavioral interventions and supports (FW-PBIS) is a system of tools and strategies for defining, teaching, and acknowledging appropriate behavior, as well as correcting inappropriate behavior. It is a framework for creating a customized system that supports student outcomes and academic success. FW-PBIS is for the entire facility; it is proactive and changes the focus from negative behaviors and exchanges to positive expectations and interactions. An important aspect of FW-PBIS is the understanding that appropriate behavior and social competence is a skill that requires direct teaching to students just like math and reading. There is no assumption that students will learn social behavior automatically or pick it up as they go through life. This critical feature in FW-PBIS leads to its effectiveness.

Roger Brown, Jr., Senior Deputy Probation Officer, Placer County Probation Department
Michael Lombardo, Director of Interagency Facilitation, Placer County Office of Education
Lauren Maben, Deputy Probation Officer, Placer County Probation Department

The Slenderman attempted murder and the murder of an 8-year-old Santa Cruz girl by a 15-year-old boy are sensationalized cases of children tried in adult court. They remind us that many children are tried in adult court. How does a prosecutor decide that a child accused of committing a serious crime should be tried in adult court? What are the factors the prosecutor weighs in making this decision? What should the court take into consideration when deciding whether to transfer a juvenile case to adult court? What aspects, if any, of the science on the development of the adolescent brain should be considered? After a juvenile is convicted, what role does adolescent brain development play in devising services for the child? What services are available to juveniles in CDCR custody? In this session we will discuss these and many more questions that arise when children are tried and convicted in adult court.

Hon. Scott M. Gordon, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles
Hon. David S. Wesley, Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles
Heather C. Bowlds, PsyD, Associate Director, Mental Health, Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation, Division of Juvenile Justice
Michele Linley, Deputy District Attorney, San Diego County
Mike Masters, Captain & Youthful Offender Program Manager, California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation
Prophet Walker, President, PWC Developers; Founding Member, Anti-Recidivism Coalition (ARC)

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Social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat, have contributed in a huge way to the growth of gender equality. As one example, this year the hash tag #askhermore was used to protest superficial (sexist) questions asked on the red carpet at the Emmy Awards. As seen in popular series such as Glee, today’s media show breakthroughs by having female lead characters, characters of color, and LGBTQ+ characters on television. Social media’s influence on this topic will be discussed and examined.

Yasmeen El-Hasan, Redondo Union Teen Court, Los Angeles
Alex Jackson, Santa Cruz Teen Peer Court
Esther Smith, Eden Township Youth Court, Castro Valley
Rebecca Whitehead, Riverside Youth Court

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Court systems throughout the U.S. are increasingly embracing remote services technology to deliver services to self-represented litigants (SRLs)—allowing litigants to get help without having to come to the courthouse. With funding from the State Justice Institute, the National Self-Represented Litigation Network (SRLN) has been studying how courts in Alaska, Utah, California, Minnesota, and Maryland use phone, web-based resources and tools, text, video, and digital records to provide to create efficient and user-friendly environments. This workshop will highlight the initial results of that study and its analysis of the effectiveness of different service methods. From expanding services to rural areas, to dealing with transportation challenges, to addressing language barriers, to allowing court customers to not lose time at work or school—remote service delivery offers opportunities to provide user-friendly services.

Katherine Alteneder, Coordinator, Self-Represented Litigation Network (via Skype)
Maria Livingston, Family Law Facilitator & Self-Help Services Manager, Superior Court of California, County of  Orange
Melanie Snider, Family Law Facilitator, Butte and Lake Counties; Managing Attorney, Self-Help Center, Butte,  Lake, and Tehama Counties
John Greacen, Court Consultant, Greacen Associates

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For many reading experts, “user experience” is modern parlance for the Orwellian approach to effective writing. But writing clearly, concisely, and competently for a diverse audience whose reading abilities and life experiences are often unknown to us is enormously challenging. Just as health professionals have learned to communicate with patients using patient-centered strategies, we must develop our own set of best practices for drafting legal texts for clients who are under stress and have limited exposure to “legalese” as well as for self-represented litigants. This presentation will explain the characteristics of highly usable legal information, review the steps of basic field-testing, and suggest methods for storing and sharing access to lessons learned..

Maria Mindlin, Expert in Readability, Plain Language, and Translation at Transcend Translations, Inc.

Incentives and sanctions are an important component in juvenile justice collaborative courts. When properly used, they are a powerful tool for improving client behavior and outcomes. Incentives and sanctions imposed in the courtroom have an impact not only on the individual appearing before the judge, but also on the other members present. This presentation will showcase what works in juvenile drug court, youth peer court, and juvenile mental health court.

Hon. Richard J. Loftus, Jr., Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara
Jo Ann Allen, Manager, Student Support Services, Santa Cruz Office of Education
Dennis Alvarez, Student, California State University, Sacramento
Deborah Cima, Treatment Court Coordinator, Superior Court of California, County of San Bernardino

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The Invisible Achievement Gap is a two-part study funded by the Stuart Foundation and conducted under the auspices of the Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WestEd in partnership with the California Child Welfare Indicators Project. Part 1, released in 2013, examined the education outcomes of students in foster care in California’s public schools, and compared the education outcomes of students in foster care with those of other students, including both the K–12 population as a whole as well as other at-risk subgroups with documented achievement gaps, e.g., low socioeconomic status students. Part 2, released in 2014, examined the education outcomes of children in foster care by characteristics unique to the foster care population such as type of placement, time in care, and number of placements during the study year.

Teri Kook, Chief Strategy Officer, Family Impact Network, Spokane, WA
Emily Putnam-Hornstein, PhD, Assistant Professor, USC School of Social Work
Michelle François Traiman, Director, Foster Youth Education Initiative (FosterEd), NCYL

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This workshop will address the recent influx of unaccompanied children from Central America and their interaction with the superior courts. The discussion will focus on who these children are and why they come to the U.S.; what happens to them when they arrive, are detained, and then are released to sponsors; the reasons they may arrive before the court; and the types of protection and relief the courts may need to consider.

Erin Maxwell, MSW, Social Worker, Detained Immigrant Children’s Project, Legal Services for Children, San Francisco
Lindsay Toczylowski, Executive Director, Immigrant Defenders Law Center, Los Angeles
Hayley Upshaw, Senior Staff Attorney, Legal Services for Children, San Francisco

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Every day, juvenile justice system actors from judges through law enforcement, attorneys, and probation personnel are responsible for protecting public safety, holding youth accountable, containing costs, and improving outcomes for hundreds of thousands of youth and their families – all while being accountable to taxpayers for the results. How can be we sure that the decisions we are making yield the best possible outcomes for public safety and for the youth and families in the juvenile justice system while being efficient with time and resources? Juvenile justice systems across the country are turning to evidence-based polices and performance measures to help them to better understand their system, develop research-driven reforms, and evaluate outcomes. In this session, learn from experts from the Pew Charitable Trusts Public Safety Performance Project (PSPP) and the National Center for Juvenile Justice (NCJJ) about how juvenile justice systems are collecting, reporting, and using data to drive system reform efforts. There will be a focus on the specific policy reforms undertaken in PSPP states and the complexities of using recidivism as a performance measure.

Teri Deal, M.Ed, Research Associate, National Center for Juvenile Justice
LaShunda Hill, EdM, State Policy Associate, Public Safety Performance Project, The Pew Charitable Trusts
Amy Bacharach, PhD, Moderator, Judicial Council, Center for Families, Children & the Courts

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Matters involving domestic violence come up in criminal, family, juvenile, and probate courts—sometimes at the same time, sometimes concurrently. In this workshop, a panel of judicial officers with experience in various case types will lead participants through various case scenarios and consider the following questions: What happens in each court? How does each of the legal frameworks that guide the outcomes differ? What can courts do to effectively coordinate across case types? What resources or tools are available to courts to obtain information from another court and coordinate services for the parties involved?

Hon. Linda Colfax, Judge, Superior Court of California, County of San Francisco
Hon. Ana L. España, Judge, Superior Court of California, County of San Diego
Hon. Michael Gassner, Commissioner, Superior Court of California, County of San Bernardino

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Women in the military and women veterans face many of the same challenges as their male counterparts, including acclimation to the military climate, planning for deployment, and long separations from families. But female military members and veterans also face challenges that are often unique: lack of appropriate female-health medical care, higher divorce rates, higher rates of sexual assault and harassment, safe housing issues especially if children are involved, outdated laws, and unique challenges transitioning to civilian employment and family roles. This workshop will focus on issues of concern to women in the military and female veterans as well as the impacts on the women themselves and their families.

Hon. Eileen C. Moore, Associate Justice, California Court of Appeal, Fourth District
Kathleen West, DrPH, Lecturer, USC Department of Preventive Medicine, UCLA Department of Social Welfare

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Hon. Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye, Chief Justice of California and Chair of the Judicial Council

Considering Culture in Domestic Violence and Sexual Violence Cases
This presentation will address the definition of culture and its relevance in domestic violence and sexual assault cases and provide guidance for professionals on steps to take to promote cultural competency in our work.

Sujata Warrier, PhD, Training and Technical Assistance Director, Battered Women’s Justice Project, Minnesota