On March 6th, four law students from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law traveled to Haiti on behalf of the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti and the Pittsburgh National Lawyer’s Guild Chapter to conduct research on the independence of the judiciary in Haiti.
They published a report, The Independence of the Judicary in Haiti under the Interim Government, on 18 April 2006. They also spoke about their experience investigating judicial independence in Haiti on Thursday, April 20, 2006 in the University of Pittsburgh’s Barco Law Building.
The students, Alex Braden, James Gabello, Brandon Gardner,and Ravi Reddy, have been involved with Pittsburgh’s local Haiti Solidarity Committee, an aid organization that meets regularly at the Thomas Merton Center in Friendship. The organization provides services to Haitian immigrants living in Pittsburgh and Haitian exchange students studying at Duquesne University.
The students were also instrumental in arranging the recent visit to Haiti by the director of the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti, Brian Concannon, Jr. Mr. Concannon spoke at the NLG International Law Symposium held at the University of Pittsburgh on February 24, 2006.
Upon arriving in Haiti, the students conferred with high governmental officials in Haiti, including some members of the Supreme Court that were recently forced to resign, as well as the judge who was forced to resign after commuting the sentence of Father Jean-Juste. They also interviewed UN and OAS officials, as well as local attorneys, activists, and lay persons. The University of Pittsburgh School of Law’s Center for International Legal Education sponsored the trip and the students were fortunate enough to have worked in tandem with a prominent NGO in Haiti, The Bureau des Avocats Internationaux.
For further information, you can contact Ravi Reddy at firstname.lastname@example.org.