Professor Kami Chavis Simmons to speak as part of ‘A Human Rights Conversation on Racial Profiling’ on Thursday, April 3, at Howard University

Photo of Wake Forest Law School Professor Kami Chavis

Professor of Law and Director of the Criminal Justice Program Kami Chavis

Wake Forest Law Professor Kami Chavis Simmons will speak as part of  “A Human Rights Conversation on Racial Profiling” at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 3, 2014, at the Howard University School of Law.

The event will begin with remarks given by U.S. Congressman John Conyers (D-Mich.) on the ways in which the End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA) might address racial profiling. His remarks will be followed by a panel discussion. In addition to Professor Simmons, who is currently visiting at the University of Maryland Law School, panelists will include Professor Anthony Farley, Albany Law School; Professor Josephine Ross, Howard University School of Law; and Jasbir Bawa, Howard University School of Law.

This conversation will analyze: (1) the human rights implications of certain law enforcement measures (such as stop-and-frisks, immigration enforcement stops, and national security measures); and (2) possible solutions to putting an end to proactive policing and investigative tactics that make race a proxy for suspicion, according to Nicole Triplett, Executive Solicitations Editor for The Human Rights and Globalization Law Review at Howard University School of Law.

“We are so excited to be engaged in what is looking to be a very provocative, expansive conversation on racial profiling,” she said in an email.

Panelists will discuss solutions including ERPA, the settlement in Floyd v. City of New York, coalition-building across communities of color, and growing media-driven awareness, among others.

Simmons, who joined the Wake Forest University School of Law faculty in 2006, brings substantial experience to teaching and writing about criminal law. After receiving her J.D. from Harvard Law School, she worked as an associate at private law firms in Washington, D.C., where she participated in various aspects of civil litigation, white-collar criminal defense, and internal investigations. In 2003, she became an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, involving her in a wide range of criminal prosecutions and in arguing and briefing appeals before the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. Professor Simmons frequently makes presentations on law-enforcement issues and is a leader in the field of police accountability. Her articles have appeared in the University of Alabama Law Review, the Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology and the Catholic University Law Review, and other legal journals.  Her research focuses on using Cooperative Federalism principals and stakeholder participation to implement sustainable reforms in the criminal justice system.  Her article, “Subverting Symbolism: The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act and Cooperative Federalism” will appear in the American Criminal Law Review in 2012.