New Law Allows Centralized Arraignments Outside New York City, NYLJ, Nov. 29, 2016
New York Catholic Bishops Call for State to Pay for Underfunded Local Legal Aid Services, NY Daily News, Nov. 28, 2016
Our View: Get Indigent Defense Bill Signed into Law, Auburn Citizen, Nov. 27, 2016
NY Mayor Cuomo: All Immigrants Will Receive Representation, Nat'l Coalition for a Civ. Rt. to Cou. News, Nov. 22, 2016
ASSOCIATION UPDATESGovernor Urged to Sign Justice Equality Act. Groups across the state have called on the Governor to sign the unanimously-passed, bipartisan bill requiring the State to reimburse counties for county public defense service costs. The diverse coalition of over 100 organizations (list in formation) are advocating the enactment of the Justice Equality Act (S.8114/A.10706), include the American Bar Association, NAACP, NYSAC, NYS Catholic Conference and Veterans of Foreign Wars. Those who have penned op-ed columns about the measure include NYS Legislative Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic & Asian Legislative Caucus members Nick Perry (Amsterdam News) and Jeffrion Aubry (New York Law Journal). The Justice Equality’s Facebook page has a factsheet, supporters list, and a compelling 30-second video on this important reform bill.
VDP Attorneys Recognized. Gary Horton, Director of NYSDA’s Veterans Defense Program (VDP), received the first-ever Criminal Justice Award from the National Alliance for Mental Illness-NYS on Nov. 11, 2016. Just weeks earlier, VDP Deputy Director Capt. Art Cody (USN, Retired) received the National Four Chaplains Humanitarian Award from the NYS Council of Veteran Organizations. Learn about NYSDA’s VDP, which has assisted or trained over 1,000 veterans and defenders representing veterans, by viewing the VDP Activities Report (pdf).
NYSDA Executive Director Receives Multiple Honors, Announces Retirement. Jonathan E. Gradess, NYSDA’s first and only Executive Director, received several awards in November, including, most recently, the Reginald Heber Smith award from the National Legal Aid & Defender Association. Also in November, he formally announced his plans to retire in 2017. A national search is underway for a new NYSDA Executive Director .