September 23, 2008

NEW YORK STATE BAR ASSOCIATION UNVEILS NEW RADIO CAMPAIGN AIMED AT EDUCATING THE PUBLIC ON KEY LEGAL RIGHTS ISSUES

The New York State Bar Association today unveiled a new radio campaign focusing on three issues central to the fair administration of justice: preventing wrongful convictions; improving the conditions at courthouses across New York; and protecting privacy rights while preserving the principle of attorney-client privilege. The radio announcements are narrated by New York State Bar Association President Bernice K. Leber (Arent Fox LLP

"This radio campaign is designed to help inform and to educate the public about important issues that will impact every New Yorker at some time in his or her life," Leber said. "Whether we are proposing legislation that will help prevent innocent people from being sent to jail, offering recommendations that will make our courthouses more user-friendly, or protecting the fundamental right of attorney-client privilege, the New York State Bar Association is working hard and is committed to ensuring that our system of justice works for all who use it."

The radio ads were produced and distributed in coordination with the New York State Broadcaster's Association as part of an ongoing campaign to raise public awareness about a wide variety of legal issues that affect the lives of New Yorkers.

The spots will run from September 22nd through October 19th. It is anticipated that the ads will air several thousand times on radio stations across the state throughout the month-long campaign. The scripts for the three radio ads are as follows:

://www.nysba.info/psa9083.mp3">Script #1 - Wrongful Convictions (30 Seconds)

This is Bernice Leber, President of the New YorkState Bar Association. It is vitally important to protect society by incarcerating those who have committed crimes. But, did you know that there has been an alarming increase in the number of convictions overturned in recent years? Ensuring that every citizen has the right to a fair trial is fundamental. Just one innocent person wrongly convicted of a crime is one person too many. We must make certain these injustices become a thing of the past.

Brought to you by the New York State Bar Association, in cooperation with the New York StateBroadcasters Association.

://www.nysba.info/psa9082.mp3">Script #2 - Courthouses (30 Seconds)

This is Bernice Leber, President of the New YorkState Bar Association. Every day, courthouses play a central role in the administration of justice. To the average citizen, however, a courthouse can often be a confusing and intimidating place. Just finding basic information or a place to conduct confidential business can be time-consuming and very frustrating. We are committed to making New York State's courthouses more accessible and user-friendly for the people they serve. The principle of "justice for all" demands nothing less.

Brought to you by the New York State Bar Association, in cooperation with the New York StateBroadcasters Association.

://www.nysba.info/psa9081.mp3">Script #3 - Privacy Rights (60 Seconds)

This is Bernice Leber, President of the New YorkState Bar Association. If you are accused of a crime, the information you share with your attorney must be private and confidential in order for your attorney to give you advice. As lawyers, we protect the private communications with clients. But today, that privacy is at risk. Regardless of the crime or who is accused, if the privacy of one lawyer is compromised, the privacy of every client could be in jeopardy. The attorney-client privilege, a fundamental element in our justice system, is under attack by those who feel it is harder to gain a conviction. However, expediency must never come at the expense of sacrificing important rights. The right to privacy and the attorney-client privilege must always be protected.

Brought to you by the New York State Bar Association, in cooperation with the New York StateBroadcasters Association.

The 74,000-member New York State Bar Association is the official statewide organization of lawyers in New Yorkand the largest voluntary state bar association in the nation. Founded in 1876, NYSBA programs and activities have continuously served the public and improved the justice system for more than 130 years.

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