Racial Justice Advocacy in Latin America and the US Explored Side by Side at NYU this Week

This week, on October 21st, 22nd, and 23rd, CLACS and the NYU Law School are presenting events that spotlight the groundwork of black activists and legal advocates for racial justice in Latin America and the US. The events will explore the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic in the struggle against racism in black communities of South America, and revisit the historic dissent by US Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, 35 years ago, that called for equal protection to Haitian immigrants and prohibiting governmental racial discrimination, respectively.

On Wednesday, October 21st CLACS will be hosting a panel discussion titled Afro-Latin Americans and Community Organizing During the Pandemic featuring community activists and legal advocates from Argentina and Brazil. The event aims at discussing the challenges of black communities in fighting oppression in South America, a problem that has been amplified by the effects on those communities of the global pandemic. This event co-presented by the Center for Ethnic Studies at Borough of Manhattan Community College, and co-sponsored by the NYU Institute of African American Affairs & Center for Black Visual Culture.

Little Haiti neighborhood of Miami, February 7, 1986. Photo copyright Gary Monroe.

On October 22nd and 23rd (Thursday and Friday), the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. and the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice at NYU School of Law present Immigration, Equal Protection, and the Promise of Racial Justice: The Legacy of Jean v. Nelson. The two-day virtual conference co-sponsored by CLACS, commemorates and explores “the 35th anniversary of Justice Thurgood Marshall‘s groundbreaking dissent in Jean v. Nelson, wherein Justice Marshall called for equal protection to apply to Haitian immigrants, and to prohibit the government from discriminating on the basis of race or national origin.” The conference is complemented by a series of podcasts series The Other Side of the Water featuring “acclaimed writers, scholars, activists, and legal advocates who will share stories and pivotal insights each week and frame the plight of Haitian asylum seekers in the 1970s and 1980s within today’s legal, political and social climate.”

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