NYSBA “Responds to Concerns Regarding Annual Meeting Panel Presentation by the Committee of Women in the Law”

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From my mailbox, this notice from the NYSBA:

For further information, please contact Colleen A. Roche 646-229-8471

New York State Bar Association Responds to Concerns Regarding
Annual Meeting Panel Presentation by the Committee of Women in the Law

The New York State Bar Association has received concerns regarding a panel discussion organized by the Committee on Women in the Law to be featured during our 2010 Annual Meeting (Their Point of View: Tips from the Other Side, Tuesday, January 26, 2010 at 11:00 a.m.)

Unfortunately, the important objectives of this panel have been overshadowed by issues raised as to the topic description and the composition of the panel.

We have therefore responded by modifying the presentation as follows:

Sharing Their Points of View: Tips from Both Sides

A distinguished panel of attorneys, comprising women and men, will engage in a dialogue about the challenges faced by women in the workplace in the areas of communication, negotiation, mediation, arbitration, organization and management of work, as well as the role of mentoring.

The panel will give specific skill building advice for women to consider in order to strengthen their practice in the above-mentioned areas.

I find the passivity of the NYSBA statement (“important objectives…have been overshadowed by issues raised”) a bit odd.  Nevertheless, the panel description, as revised, is a whole lot better than a “distinguished panel of gentlemen from the legal field will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of women in the areas of communication, negotiation, mediation, arbitration, organization and women’s overall management of their legal work.” I therefore rescind my call for a proposed boycott.

-Bridget Crawford

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2 Responses to NYSBA “Responds to Concerns Regarding Annual Meeting Panel Presentation by the Committee of Women in the Law”

  1. Ann Bartow says:

    But still no”distinguished panel of ladies from the legal field” to “discuss the strengths and weaknesses of men in the areas of communication, negotiation, mediation, arbitration, organization and men’s overall management of their legal work.”

  2. Anita Bernstein says:

    Bridget, awesome work from you. On Friday I had the devil’s own time on the NYSBA website trying to figure out who should get my protest e-mail, in which I asked when the membership could expect a panel of black lawyers on the strengths and weaknesses of white ones, Christian lawyers on Jewish lawyers, the short opining on the tall, etc. Eventually I settled on someone who wrote back saying she wasn’t the right recipient but she’d forward my message if I wanted. I said okay and heard nothing further.

    I’d love to know which “important objectives” were so cruelly silenced by the uproar. It sounds as if the New York State Bar Association believes that female lawyers need to be assessed by male ones. That way we’ll know whether women are good enough lawyers to deserve employment rights, I guess.

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