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270.2 sec. 1 - Environmental Justice Practice Project (Fall 2012)

Instructor: Juan Carlos Cancino  (view instructor's teaching evaluations)
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Units: 3
Meeting Time: Th 3:35-6:15
Meeting Location: 111

Course Start: August 23, 2012


Within the San Joaquin Valley's eight counties, there are over 220 low-income unincorporated communities that lack basic infrastructure (e.g., sidewalks, parks, streetlights) and reliable access to public services (e.g., public safety officials, healthy drinking water, wastewater disposal) for their nearly 500,000 residents. The Community Equity Initiative, a project of California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. (CRLA), works to address and eliminate social, political, and environmental factors that negatively impact these communities.

This practice-oriented course will provide students an opportunity to serve these communities using the tools of environmental justice, land use, and local government law. Students will build knowledge in these legal fields in the context of community-based lawyering. Led by counsel from California Rural Legal Assistance, students will work in small groups on legal research and advocacy projects for client neighborhoods. The class will require at least one trip to the Central Valley, where students will (1) learn from community members about their priorities and concerns, and (2) discuss legal findings directly with neighborhood groups.

Students will have work product deadlines during the semester, and they will present and reflect on their work at the conclusion of the term. To facilitate collaborative and practice-oriented work, the course will be ungraded.

APPLICATION PROCESS: Enrollment will be limited to twelve students, and the course will ONLY be offered during the Fall for the 2012-13 academic year. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis. Interested students should submit a resume and a covering email with a 1-2 paragraph statement of interest and experience to Juan Carlos Cancino at jcancino@crla.org. No particular background is required or even prioritized. Course instructors are interested in admitting students who are interested in working on behalf of and helping to empower poor, rural communities using law of local government, land use and environmental justice.

This course is only open to students who have not previously enrolled.

This course satisfies the Skills Requirement.

Exam Notes: T
This is a credit only course
Course Category: Environmental Law
This course is cross-listed in the following categories:
Advocacy Skills Courses
Social Justice and Public Interest

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Readers:
A reader will be used in this class.

Books:
Instructor has indicated that no books will be assigned.

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