The underlying documentation for this slideshow is varied and extensive. Some sources and citations are provided here and in the separate handouts, and all others are available in Redfield, Diversity Realized: Putting the Walk with the Talk for Diversity in the Legal Profession (publication pending Vandeplas 2009) or by contacting us for details. I invite anyone interested in diversity and pipeline (that is, the journey or pathway from kindergarten to the profession) issues to contact me with questions or ideas: firstname.lastname@example.org; 207-752-1721
Who are we and why do we care?Stats on the professionYou can make a difference
90% of the bar is white, highly out of proportion with population numbers.
Achievement gaps are longstanding and enduring. This slide and the next illustrate the issue in reading, a critical skill for life and for the practice of law. As the notes indicate, other subjects are similar.For those students who remain in school, by seventh grade, black and Latino students, on average, read at the level of white third graders; on average, black and Latino 17-year-olds at the same level as white 13-year-olds.
To approach parity, at least 100,000 additional black attorneys and over 230,000 additional Hispanic attorneys would need to join the ranks of the profession to reach something approaching parity with the general population. To achieve significant change in diverse populations, the law academy would need to increase its admissions for blacks and Hispanics well beyond what the current applicant pool, in the current milieu, can support. For blacks, the anticipated pool would proveinsufficient;for Hispanics, about 70% of the available Hispanic students would need to be admitted to law school to achieve parity in the profession, for American Indian/Alaskan Natives, about 90%. In an overall lawyer population estimated at about 1.1 million, these numbers would involve increasing current black admission rates from 3,980 to approximately 5,300 and Hispanic admission rates from 4,400 to approximately 12,000 per year, an increase of about 33% and 173% respectively. The numbers would need to be even greater if there is not a relative decrease in the current majority groups. Today’s first graders are the law school graduating class for 2028, the year Justice O’Connor suggests as the closing of the window on affirmative action based on a compelling diversity interest. There are almost four million first graders. Of these, 57% are white, 17% black, 20% Hispanic, 5% ASPI, and 1% AIAN, providing a black first grade population around 650,000 and an Hispanic population around 800,000. Projecting current degree-granting rates, about one million of these first graders overall can be anticipated to earn Bachelor’s degrees (BA) in 2024-25, including 9.6% of black students and 7.2% of Hispanic students. In turn, of these BAs, again, projecting current applicant data, about 20% of black students and 25% of Hispanic students can be anticipated to have earned BAs with GPAs sufficient for admission to law school under existing norms. (GPAs included here are 3.25 and above, making the percentage used for these calculations slightly more inclusive.) Fewer still will have LSAT scores in the range likely to be admitted.Notes on numbers continued on next slide.
[Numbers continued }While there is a high interest in law school, other professions will also be competing for qualified applicants. Assuming, though, thatall are possible participants in the applicant pool for law school and assuming that the factors outlined here (and their causes) do not changesignificantly, the qualified pool would have to be much larger than projection of current numbers would suggest. See further citations in Redfield, Diversity, particularly Dalessandro, LSAC Research; current admissions, Fall 08 Data, Law School Admissions Council (LSAC), Data, Volume Summary Admitted Applicants by Ethnic & Gender Group; Data, Volume Summary Matriculants by Ethnic & Gender Group. By any count, such an increase (or even half or a quarter of such an increase) cannot be gained by continuing to nibble at the edges of the pool or the larger problem.[These numbers are derived by applying the population percentage estimated for 2030 to the overall number of lawyers for 2030 (holding constant the percentage of lawyers of the entire population based on 2000 percentage of .3%). Admittedly, it is likely that the next census will show an increase in this percentage, but for purposes of a rough comparative estimate, the existing data is used. The general calculations here do not take special account of retirement or mortality rates, nor of the additional lawyers added to the professions ranks between the 2000 census and today. It could be anticipated that these numbers will at least partially cancel each other out, but in any case, the rough trends remain obvious. ]WITHOUT Pipeline FOCUS & CHANGE in approach to a systemic, sustained effort, the pipeline will remain as is and diversity will remain stalled.To fix it, stop talking, start walking.
Even at the roughest count, in the best of circumstances, numbers will not be there from now to 2028.The numbers in this group of slides are from various sources (detailed in Redfield, Diversity Realized) and necessitate a variety of assumptions. Even if the estimates are half wrong, the task repairing the pipeline remains daunting if not overwhelming. This is what the ABA means when it says diversity is unforeseeable.
The Bar has a history of working on diversity issues, Key point was commission in 1984 reporting in 1986 that law is a segregated profession. Not much progress, Miles to Go reports continue to remain essentially the same.Bar has power as convernors, leaders, also is the accreditor of law schools.ABA GOAL III:ELIMINATE BIAS AND ENHANCE DIVERSITY.Objectives:Promote full and equal participation in the association, our profession, and the justice system by all persons.Eliminate bias in the legal profession and the justice system.Source: ABA Mission and Goals, August 2008, http://www.abanet.org/about/goals.html. See also ABA, Goal IX,“to promote the full and equal participation in the legal profession by minorities, women and persons with disabilities.” (former diversity goal), http://www.abanet.org/lsd/diversity/plan.pdf.
ABA Presidential Advisory Council on Diversity in the Profession, The Critical Need to Further Diversify the Legal Academy & the Legal Profession 12 (Oct. 2005), http://www.abanet.org/op/pipelineconf/acdreport.pdfBeyond the moralistic responsibility, it also makes good business sense for the legal profession to invest time and resources in the diversity pipeline. Law firms, corporate legal departments, government, and the judiciary cannot recruit attorneys of color who do not exist. Diversity efforts will encounter inherent obstacles as long as there remain too few people of color who decide to enter the profession in the first place. Forward-thinking legal employers have already accepted this reality, and label their diversity pipeline “donations” as recruitment expenses.
Law-themed Education as Superhero<br />Raising Aspirations and Increasing Achievement in a Single Bound<br />1<br />
The test results are predictive and damning.<br />11<br />Source: Based on prior LSAC prepared slide<br />
What the math would look like. . .<br />TOO FEW = <br />+100,000 <br />+230,000 <br />Without repair of the pipeline, PARITY is IMPOSSIBLE <br />12<br />
Law will remain out of touch and out of sync … <br />talking . . . talking <br />not walking<br />talking . .<br />talking .<br />13<br />
There really is little surprise that at the law school gates<br />there are too few URMS available in the qualified Pool interested in law school.<br />14<br />
The legal community has tried. . . .<br />15<br />
And recognized it can partner for change.<br />Not just at its own gates, but along the Pipeline P20, preschool to the profession<br />16<br />
17<br />We are, however, an action-oriented profession of problem-solvers and deal-makers. Let us make this project the most important case on our calendar, the biggest deal pending. The clock is ticking, and we have no time to waste. We can and must join together to make diversity in our profession a reality, rather than an unfulfilled promise .<br />Source: ABA Report, see notes.<br />
Like Justice for Chocolate<br />19<br />You CAN’T CHOOSE WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW<br />Video entry for the State Bar of Texas<br /> "Texans on Justice" YouTube contestwww.youtube.com/watch?v=0sWA2FytJoA<br />
To change …mind the new 3Rs<br />20<br />Source: Gates Foundation<br />
Components of a Law Themed Program<br />21<br />Redfield et al. See notes.<br />
Law curriculum is powerful.<br />Engaging<br />Relevant <br />Real world experience<br />