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October 22, 2013

NAACP to hold civil rights education workshop

By Mark Boshnack Staff Writer
The Daily Star

---- — An interactive workshop designed to preserve civil rights for students and community, while being respectful of law enforcement, will be held Wednesday at SUNY Oneonta, an organizer said. 

The Oneonta branch of the NAACP and SUNY Oneonta’s department of Africana and Latino Studies, are sponsoring “Know Your Rights.” The session, led by Barrie Gewanter, director of the Syracuse office of the ACLU, will be held 7-9 p.m. at the Center for Multicultural Experiences in Lee Hall. It is open to the students and the general public.

It’s an effort to answer questions students routinely ask about their dealings with various police agencies, local NAACP vice president Regina Betts said. This includes how to act when they are stopped while driving and when to ask for a lawyer. It will give students a forum to voice their concerns, she said.

One of the workshop participants is State University College at Oneonta Africana and Latino Studies department chairmen Robert Compton. His department is involved out of a general concern for the welfare of students and faculty, he said. Both groups need to know what their rights are and how to interact with the police.

Also involved in the presentation are Oneonta attorney Carol Malz and local NAACP President Lee Fisher. Gewanter is a member of the Legislative Advisory Committee that drafted legislation for the Syracuse Citizen Review Board. Other sponsors are the college’s United University Professions Oneonta and the Center for Multicultural Experiences.