DHHBA President Anat Maytal organized at her law firm, Baker & Hostetler LLP, a panel discussion to be held at the New York Yankees Steakhouse in NYC on February 2nd titled “Removing Barriers to Work: A Panel Discussion on Employing Individuals with Disabilities in Your Workplace.”
The distinguished panel members — including in-house counsel from Microsoft and Google, and a Wisconsin appellate judge — will address issues facing employers in hiring and accommodating employees with disabilities. The panelists will also share their personal experiences as individuals in the legal filed. Baker Hostetler Partner Amy Traub will moderate, Partner Joyce Ackerbaum Cox will participate as a panel member and Associate/DHHBA President Anat Maytal will provide welcoming remarks.
The panel is open to both lawyers and non-lawyers as it will also delve into issues facing employers in hiring and accommodating employees with disabilities. It is CLE/HRCI/SHRM credit approved. If you're in NYC and interested in attending (or know anyone that you think may be interested), you can view the invitation and register by clicking here.
By Reema Radwan, Esq.
On Tuesday, April 19, 2016, a select group of twelve deaf and hard of hearing attorneys were sworn into the United States Supreme Court bar by Chief Justice John Roberts. In a historic and thoughtful gesture receiving much press coverage, Chief Justice Roberts used American Sign Language from the bench by signing “your motion is granted, welcome” to indicate that the attorneys were admitted, which he learned specifically for this occasion. This event marked the first-ever group ceremony for deaf and hard of hearing attorneys at the U.S. Supreme Court, symbolizing the strides that attorneys with disabilities have made.
All twelve attorneys are members of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Bar Association (DHHBA), which was created in 2013. It is estimated that about 250 deaf or hard of hearing attorneys are practicing law in the United States today. In organizing this event, DHHBA sought to highlight the achievements of deaf and hard of hearing attorneys and help break down stereotypes by demonstrating clearly that deaf and hard of hearing individuals can achieve anything they set their minds to, with deaf attorneys holding positions ranging from litigators to prosecutors to judges. The twelve attorneys and their sponsor were as follows:
Accommodations to assist the deaf and hard of hearing attorneys during the swearing-in ceremony and oral arguments at the Supreme Court included the use of two sign language interpreters and a special court reporter who provided real-time captioning so that the attorneys could read captions of what was being said on mobile devices or tablets through a password-protected wi-fi signal provided exclusively for the occasion. Though such technology is usually forbidden inside the courtroom, the Court granted this rare exception. Some of the attorneys relied solely on sign language interpretation, some relied solely on real-time captioning services, and some relied on both. Such accommodations were extremely helpful to ensure that all of the attorneys were able to follow oral arguments with everyone else in the courtroom.
Immediately following the swearing-in ceremony at the Supreme Court, the DHHBA attorneys headed over to the White House where they were invited to attend a meeting and roundtable discussion with Paulette Aniskoff and Maria Town from the White House Office of Public Engagement, and with White House Counsel Neil Eggleston. The White House congratulated the newly admitted attorneys for becoming members of the United States Supreme Court bar and for serving as strong role models for their communities. They also discussed ways to promote diversity and accessibility in employment for both the deaf and hard of hearing community and the disability community at large. The DHHBA attorneys were also asked about the barriers they face in the legal profession and shared their insights into these experiences.
Reema Radwan, Esq. is a board member of the DHHBA, and currently practices in Washington DC as an Attorney-Advisor at Regulations and Rulings in the Office of Trade at U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
On Tuesday April 19, 2016, thirteen members of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Bar Association (DHHBA) will be sworn in and admitted to the Bar of the United States Supreme Court. All members are deaf or hard of hearing attorneys.
This occasion will mark the first time the DHHBA takes part in the group swearing-in ceremony that occurs most days the Supreme Court is in session. It will be the largest group of deaf and hard of hearing attorneys to be admitted to the Supreme Court Bar. The Supreme Court will provide sign language interpreters and real-time captioning services (also known as Communication Access Realtime Translation, or CART) to DHHBA participants.
Anat Maytal, President of DHHBA and a litigation associate at Baker Hostetler LLP said, “We are truly honored to be admitted to the Supreme Court Bar. Our admission sets a precedent that will hopefully encourage others with disabilities to pursue a legal career and view the legal profession as being open to diverse backgrounds.”
It is customary for attorneys to be admitted to the Supreme Court Bar with a group, such as a professional organization or alumni of a university or service group. At the ceremony, an attorney already admitted to the Supreme Court Bar vouches for prospective members, and Chief Justice John Roberts welcomes them before they swear to support the Constitution.
John Stanton, a member of the Supreme Court Bar and appellate attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Immigration Litigation, as well as a DHHBA member, will ask the Supreme Court to admit the 13 DHHBA participants. These participants include:
Supreme Court Bar admission allows attorneys to argue cases before the Supreme Court. Admission to the Supreme Court is only granted if an attorney is sponsored by two current members of the Supreme Court Bar and has been an attorney in good standing for at least three years.
For more information, please contact Anat Maytal at email@example.com or 212-847-2813.
Haben Girma, a deaf and blind attorney and Harvard Law School graduate, was the subject of an article by Above the Law in which she discusses how technology has enabled her to practice law.
Click here to read the full article.
DHHBA is holding elections for the board positions of President, Secretary, Treasurer, National Association of the Deaf (NAD) Liaison, Alexander Graham Bell Association (AG Bell) Liaison, and Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) Liaison.
Each DHHBA member will receive an e-mail with an unique URL to take them to their online ballot to vote in the election. DHHBA members will have until 11:59 pm on February 5, 2014 to vote in the election. If you are not a DHHBA member, please click here to join.
Questions? Please click here to contact us.
Jared Allebest, attorney and DHHBA member, was recently featured in Utah's Desert News.
According to the article, Mr. Allebest is "profoundly deaf without hearing aids. The 33-year-old BYU grad and former Mormon missionary took a circuitous route to complete his education, and two years ago he opened a private practice in Salt Lake City despite all the people who told him his deafness precluded such ambitions. He’s taken cases to trial in Ogden, Provo and Salt Lake." Click here for the full article.