The School of Law is pleased to welcome back Craig Batchelor, ’08, who is now located in room 417. Craig is now directing
our Black Farmer Discrimination Project under our Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC) Director Amanda Dunlap, '08’s, supervision.
As you may know, over the past several decades, more than 15,700 black farmers were
discriminated against by the US Department of Agriculture, which refused them
loans readily available to white farmers. Last fall, these farmers received $50,000 settlements as a result of a class action law suit.
The School of Law Project was approved by Federal
District Court Judge Paul Friedman in January, and entails four component parts
designed to provide education and referral services :
1. to develop and publish a
one page Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) sheet alerting members of the class
action suit that the settlement they received in the case is taxable income and
connecting them to free tax preparers and legal assistance providers in each
2. to develop and publish a
website with the same information and links
3. to supervise a telephone
hotline manned by trained law students (mostly earning community service hours)
who provide the same information, and
4. to produce a video
which will be available on our website and via You Tube providing the same
Andy Marks, a member of
the School of Law’s Foundation Board, is co-lead counsel in the case and brought
the opportunity to the School of Law’s Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC.) Amanda, aided by Rachel Huhn, '13, developed the project description last fall.
The School of Law is thrilled to be able to offer such a vital service to a discriminated group of individuals and pleased to see that the training our students received in the LITC has resulted in careers which, along with additional training and experience they have garnered, have qualified them in the eyes of Judge Friedman, to provide this service.
"Watch this space" for more information as it becomes available!