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With Increased Attention, Human Trafficking Emerges from the Shadows

UM News

HumanTraffickingCORAL GABLES, Fla. (January 22, 2015)—In an ambitious effort to raise awareness, improve understanding, and generate solutions to the emerging epidemic  of human trafficking in Miami, the School of Education and Human Development and a number of community partners are holding three forums on the UM campus, two of them this week, to address the problem.

Hosted by UM President Donna E. Shalala and Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle, the first forum, “Combating the ‘Glamour’ and Demand of Human Trafficking through Media, Education and Services,” will begin at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, January 27 at the Newman Alumni Center.

Alberto M. Carvalho, superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools; Orlando A. Prescott, administrative judge for the 11th Judicial Circuit’s Juvenile Division; and Deborah Baker-Egozi, president of the Miami chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers, will join other community leaders, service providers, and local, state, and national law enforcement agencies in the effort Rundle began four years ago to find ways to more readily identify victims and prosecute perpetrators of the illicit trade in humans, often for the purpose of forced labor or commercial sex.

Attendees may RSVP by contacting Barbara Pacheco at 305-547-0749 or BarbaraPacheco@MiamiSAO.com but are welcome to just walk in.

The second forum, held in collaboration with the Miami-Dade County Human Trafficking Coalition and the Miami-Dade County Human Trafficking Collaborative Project, will follow on Friday, January 30, between 9 a.m. and noon at the BankUnited Center Hurricane 100 Room. Titled “Human Trafficking in Miami and Our Local Response Conference,” the event will focus on innovative, emerging service and advocacy practices and feature panel presentations and discussions with survivors of sex trafficking, along with leading service providers in the region.

Faculty, staff, and students who wish to attend the Friday forum may RSVP to Ivon Mesa, of Miami-Dade’s Community Action and Human Services Department, at MESAI@miamidade.gov.

The third forum, “Human Trafficking: Interrupting the Pathway to Victimization,” is being organized by The Melissa Institute for Violence Prevention and Treatment on Friday, May 1. At the all-day event at the Newman Alumni Center, leading experts will discuss the complexities of identifying, intervening with, and protecting human trafficking victims, as well as the research on therapeutic, legal, and social solutions. For more information or to register, visit http://www.melissainstitute.org/.

Miller School of Medicine student Juhi Jain addresses an audience of medical professionals and law enforcement personnel attending the "Human Trafficking: An Emerging Epidemic" symposium.

Miller School of Medicine student Juhi Jain addresses an audience of medical professionals and law enforcement personnel attending the “Human Trafficking: An Emerging Epidemic” symposium.

Students at the Miller School of Medicine are equally concerned by the illicit trade in humans and last week held a daylong symposium,  “Human Trafficking: An Emerging Epidemic,” at UM’s Student Activities Center aimed at educating physicians, nurses, social workers, and law enforcement about the growing problem.

As Juhi Jain, a fourth-year Miller School student who received a grant from the Arsht Ethics Initiatives to stage the conference explained, human trafficking does not discriminate. “It affects all ethnicities,” she said, noting that American citizens are just as likely as immigrants to be victims.

Jain first became aware of how serious the human trafficking problem is about two years ago, when some of her fellow Miller School students told her about two victims who showed up at the UM/Jackson Memorial Hospital emergency room for medical treatment. It was then that Jain consulted with two of her mentors—Panagiota “Pat” Caralis, M.D., J.D., professor of medicine, and Edwin Olsen, M.D., M.B.A., J.D., professor of clinical psychiatry—who persuaded her to do more research on the issue, specifically the medical and legal aspects of the problem and how to identify and aid victims.

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Alumnus Shares His Journey from Musician to Global Advocate

By Robin Shear
UM News

Daley-Harris

Sam Daly-Harris returned to his alma mater to present the Distinguished Alumni Lecture.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (January 21, 2015) — When Sam Daley-Harris was in his senior year at the University of Miami, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated. The event so shook him that the musician questioned who he was and what his purpose in life would be for however long he had on this earth.

Forty-five years later, Daley-Harris, B.M. ’69, M.M. ’75, was back at his alma mater to share his journey from philosophical musician to global activist during the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Lecture held at the Robert and Judi Prokop Newman Alumni Center.

“Making the Difference You’ve Always Dreamed of Making” was the title of his talk, and by the end it was clear Daley-Harris has done just that and then some.

The Miami native was a percussionist with the Miami Philharmonic Orchestra and a high school music teacher when he founded the anti-poverty lobbying group RESULTS and its sister organization RESULTS Educational Fund in 1980. His achievements in empowering millions of everyday citizens to demand action from Congress in the fight against poverty and hunger have earned international attention and accolades.

In 1994 his book on this topic, Reclaiming Our Democracy: Healing the Break between People and Government, was published. A year later Daley-Harris founded the Microcredit Summit Campaign along with Muhammad Yunus and FINCA founder John Hatch. Yunus, now a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, wrote the foreword for the 20th anniversary reissue of the book.

A chance meeting with UM President Donna E. Shalala brought Daley-Harris back to speak at his alma mater after four decades. They met during a reception for the 40th anniversary of The Children’s Defense Fund, he explained, where Daley-Harris’s wife has worked for the past 25 years. Shalala served as the fund’s board chair from 1992-93. Her interest during that meeting led Daley-Harris to reconnect with the UM Alumni Association.

Roughly 200 people gathered to hear Daley-Harris speak on January 15 at the Newman Alumni Center. Among them were his former percussion professor, Fred Wickstrom, his former classmates from college and high school, his former music students, as well as his mother, wife, and daughter.

Looking out over all the familiar faces in the audience, he remarked to laughter, “It’s like my bar mitzvah all over again.”

Daley-Harris went on to explain that RESULTS has been successful in increasing significant appropriations for key issues like microfinancing and child and maternal health because the group gives its volunteers the support and coaching necessary to go from their comfort zone (like writing checks or clicking a mouse) to the place “where the magic happens,” he said. “If you want greatness from volunteers, you have to provide them with a great structure of support.”’

He said RESULTS and other like-minded groups have empowered countless volunteers through monthly conference calls with guest speakers that enable them to ask questions and practice articulating their knowledge on issues. Role-playing and providing constructive feedback are also critical in strengthening the commitment and capabilities of volunteers, he said.

When met with cynicism or apathy toward the political process, Daley-Harris said he points to the achievement of groups like RESULTS and those he has coached. He shared that the Child Survival Fund, which has gone from receiving $25 million per year to receiving $700 million per year in appropriations since RESULTS began lobbying on child health issues in 1984. At the same time, he added, preventable child deaths have decreased from 41,000 per day in 1984 to 17,000 per day in 2014. “RESULTS didn’t vaccinate one child,” he said. “It created a center of advocacy that allowed that to happen.”

A group whose founder he coached, Citizens’ Climate Lobby, has grown to 225 chapters globally since its launch in 2007. Pointing to its impact, Daley-Harris noted that CCL volunteers in the U.S. and Canada had 1,789 letters to the editor published in 2014 (up from 36 in 2010) and had 925 meetings with members of Congress, Parliament, or their staff.

In 2012 he created the Center for Citizen Empowerment and Transformation (CCET) to help other nongovernmental organizations train their members to create champions in Congress and the media for their cause.

Toward the end of his talk, Daley-Harris shared a favorite anecdote illustrating why he’s so invested in his work. Speaking recently at another university, he was asked for his view of the single most important issue to tackle going into the next 50 years. He replied that while a scientist might say climate change and a political scientist might say campaign reform and someone else might highlight another global concern, for him, the most critical issue remains “why so few of us see ourselves as change makers. If we could change that,” he concluded, “there would be a barrage of us pouring in to address all of these other issues.”

Daley-Harris concluded his lecture with a Q&A session and book signing. He lives in Princeton, New Jersey, with his wife, Shannon, and their two children, Micah and Sophie.

Posted in Events, Features, NewsComments (0)

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a Love Brick at the Herbert Wellness Center

LoveBrick

Tim Coyle and Ali Kaphan, who met as student employees at the Herbert Wellness Center in 2008, got engaged at the Love Bridge in November, when Coyle surprised Kaphan with a brick of their own.

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, why why not declare your eternal love on a brick on the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center’s Love Bridge? Join the more than 300 UM alumni and friends of the Herbert Wellness Center who have chosen to celebrate someone special in their lives with a Love Brick.

Not only does a Love Brick publically proclaim your love for someone you care deeply about, but funds from the bricks help put UM students on the permanent wellness path. Initiated by Patti and Allan Herbert and supported by funds from the Love Bridge, the CHAMP (Canes Health Assessment and Motivation Program) Endowment Fund offers all UM students free fitness assessments each year they’re in school. Students use the information from these assessments to get started or stay on the right health and fitness program to achieve their wellness goals.

The Love Bridge combines two dimensions of wellness that are key to the mission of the Herbert Wellness Center. In addition to supporting emotional wellness for those who receive a brick, the program promotes physical wellness in UM students who take advantage of CHAMP. In other words, a Love Brick is the perfect Valentine’s Day gift.

To purchase your brick, fill out the Love Bridge brochure. For more information, contact Carmen Gilbert at 305-284-8512 or visit the Herbert Wellness Center’s website.

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First Study on Haitian-American Glaucoma Rates Stresses Need for Awareness and Screening to Prevent Vision Loss

Special to UM News

GlaucomaStudy

Richard K. Lee and Richard K. Parrish, II

MIAMI, FLA. (January 20,2015) —Physicians at the University of Miami’s Bascom Palmer Eye Institute and medical students at the Miller School of Medicine are the first to publish data on the prevalence of glaucoma in the Haitian-American population. Their findings, based on data from 750 participants, show that nearly 26 percent of Haitian-Americans have signs and symptoms for various stages of glaucoma.

Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness worldwide, disproportionately affecting African Americans and Latinos living in the U.S. A disease characterized by slowly progressive optic nerve atrophy, glaucoma is typically a painless and silent blinding disease that can be easily screened for in a community setting and treated to prevent further vision loss and blindness.

Richard K. Lee, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of ophthalmology, cell biology and neuroscience,  and Richard K. Parrish, II, M.D., professor and Edward W.D. Norton Chair of Ophthalmology, led the study with medical student Christine Bokman and members of the Ophthalmology Interest Club. “Glaucoma Screening in the Haitian Afro-Caribbean Population of South Florida” is published in a recent issue of PLOS ONE.

Using data from community health screenings in Little Haiti, the team found that not only do older patients suffer from signs of the disease, but also younger patients less than 40 years old have disease warning signs such as high eye pressures and suspicious changes to the optic disc. Of the entire study population, 32 percent had eye pressures above normal (>22 mm Hg), which can ultimately cause severe damage to the eye and lead to blindness.

To improve ophthalmic care, several efforts were made during and after the study to provide counseling and follow-up for this population to help decrease disease progression. Participants were given referrals with their test results for follow-up with their primary care providers and recommended ophthalmologists within the community, regardless of insurance status.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force does not recommend for or against screening for glaucoma, but Lee says these findings should start that shift. “Overall, this study highlights the need to create awareness of differential glaucoma risk within ethnic communities of the U.S. to prevent further eye disease and blindness,” said Lee. “This study along with previously published studies on the rates of glaucoma in specific populations stresses the need for targeted screening within communities and has implications for policy changes in the approach for ocular disease screening to prevent blindness.”

Louis Pasquale, M.D., from the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary/Harvard Medical School, was a collaborator in the data analysis. Project Medishare and the Bernard Mevs Hospital Eye Clinic, where Lee is volunteer medical director, will translate these findings to be more aggressive in screening for and treating glaucoma in the Haitian population in Port-Au-Prince. Read more about Lee and the Bernard Mevs Eye Clinic in the University’s Haiti Special Report.

 

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Beloved Scholar M. Minnette Massey Passes Torch to Charlton Copeland

By Catharine Skipp
Special to UM News

MasseyLawChair

M. Minnette Massey and Charlton Copeland

CORAL GABLES, FLA. (January 23, 2015)—She has been described as indomitable, outspoken, adorable, irascible, and deeply decent, with a splash of salt. He has been called spirited, astute, erudite, committed, and good humored.

On Thursday, January 29, M. Minnette Massey, professor of law emerita, will formally fulfill a promise she made in 2008 to Charlton Copeland, professor of law.

As Massey, former acting dean of Miami Law, half a century on the faculty, early adopter of diversity, and the undisputed queen of civil procedure, exited her final class, she turned to Copeland—still a new professor with only a year under his belt—and delivered the scepter. “It’s up to you now,” she bequeathed.

Copeland will be appointed the inaugural holder of the M. Minnette Massey Chair in Law on Thursday at 4:30 p.m. at the Lowe Art Museum.

Massey first arrived at the University of Miami in 1944 as a freshman, class of 1948. She would graduate from Miami Law in 1951 and join the faculty in 1958, while simultaneously earning an LL.M. as a Kenison Fellow at New York University.

The fair-haired, green-eyed spitfire was one of the “First Wave,” fourteen woman pioneers who elbowed their way into the male-dominated world of American law school professors. Massey began teaching legal research as an assistant law librarian, but rapidly asserted her dominance in the machinations of Florida civil procedure.

She would catch the attention of U.S. Supreme Court Justices Hugo Black and William O. Douglas, who admired her dazzling intellect and skills as a raconteur. Think Shirley MacLaine, only loads smarter. She ascended to assistant dean, then first woman dean, all the while imprinting armies of young lawyers as masters of the intricacies of litigation and the rightful leaders of their profession. She was a force to behold, and she used her powers to lead the law school into integration of both the faculty and student body.

When Copeland was born, Massey was already a decade past her midpoint at Miami Law. He would take a long, but far more interesting path to the steps of 1311 Miller Drive.

On his road to becoming a law teacher committed to the ideal of the training of lawyers and scholarly engagement, the young New Orleanian Copeland would weather many New England winters: first at Amherst College, then through both Divinity and Law School at Yale University. From there, he would clerk in South Africa for two justices of the Constitutional Court, then return to clerk at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. After clerking, he was an associate at Hogan & Hartson in Washington, D.C. Copeland began his academic career as a visiting professor at Northwestern University School of Law.

The Florida sun would finally shine on Copeland in 2007 when he was invited to join the faculty at Miami Law. From the lectern or the pulpit, the charismatic Copeland holds his audiences spellbound, although he suspects that such a feat is easier when students haven’t been introduced to the material through an episode on Law & Order.

Whether teaching civil procedure, administrative law, or federal courts, Copeland’s classes are highly sought after. His goals as a teacher are always to keep his students engaged in the subject matter by demonstrating the commonsense dimension of often-arid areas of study. Additionally, he aims to demonstrate the relevance of these subjects to both the practical questions that lawyers face and the fundamental issues of policymaking in a democracy. Copeland considers himself first and foremost a teacher of lawyers who, he expects, will do great things in their respective communities.

Copeland’s passion for teaching is fueled by his scholarly interests. His primary area of research during his time at Miami Law has been an attempt to rethink our conceptualization of the national-state relationship as reflected in state and national institutions. In both his writings on federalism and his more explicit writing on the theological dimensions of law and politics, Copeland has been influenced by his belief that there is something normatively consequential in our being stuck in a polity with others with whom we disagree, and that our political and legal institutions and discourses reflect the tensions created by this reality. He has not shied away from tackling issues of contemporary moment, including the federalism debate surrounding the Affordable Care Act and the debates over marriage equality.

Copeland once met a Miami Law alumnus, who credited Massey with having gotten him a life-changing internship in Washington, D.C. at the National Labor Relations Board. So impressed by the impact Massey had on students, Copeland is proud to be the inaugural faculty member in Miami Law’s Washington, D.C., Semester-in-Practice, which combines an externship in Washington, D.C., with coursework in Copeland’s Federal Policy Making.

From Massey, Copeland inherited the role of faculty advisor for the Florida Supreme Court internship program. He fondly remembers that in a conversation with Massey a few years into his advising, she complained that he had seemingly picked the students with the best academic record, forgetting the impact that the program could have on the lives of students whose promise could be seen despite less than stellar grades. She reminded him that teachers are empowered to imagine futures for students that they don’t yet see, and sometimes teachers are best-equipped to help them achieve such futures.

It is fitting that the first M. Minnette Massey Chair in Law is Massey 2.0, also known as Charlton Copeland.

The M. Minnette Massey Chair in Law was established through the generosity of a consortium of Miami Law alumni and friends, and by a lead gift from Lawrence B. Rodgers, J.D. ’67. In honor of her pioneering role, The Massey Chair will be permanently attached to the dean’s position at Miami Law. All future deans will be known as Dean and M. Minnette Massey Chair in Law. In the interim, the chair will rotate among Miami Law faculty and be awarded for two-year terms.

RSVP for the installation ceremony.

 

Posted in Appointments, Honors, NewsComments (0)

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