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Emma Roth

2017, Equal Justice Works Fellowships, Emma Roth

Emma Roth

Name of Host Organization: ACLU Women’s Rights Project
City, State: New York, New York
Issue area: Education/Special Education
Sponsors: Morrison & Foerster

The Project

Emma will provide direct legal services and engage in policy advocacy on behalf of girls of color who have been systematically excluded from programs meant to redress the racial achievement gap in education.

The Inspiration

Need Addressed By Project
Policymakers frequently overlook girls of color when designing education reforms. The exclusion of girls of color is unjustified, as they face many of the same barriers to opportunity as boys of color. Girls of color face additional unique obstacles, such as teenage pregnancy, discriminatory school discipline policies, sexual harassment and assault, intimate partner or familial sexual violence, and child sex trafficking.
The Right Person For This Project
Emma is the right person for the project because:
• She has a track record of providing zealous legal services and engaging in impact litigation on behalf of girls and young women of color
• She has experience engaging in policy advocacy at both the federal and local level
• She is committed to a client-centered model of lawyering through which she will arm girls of color with the knowledge and tools necessary to become their own advocates for change
Plans For First Six Months of Fellowship
In the first six months, Emma will:
• Identify localities implementing education initiatives that exclude girls of color and file freedom of information requests to obtain relevant public records about those initiatives
• Develop a guide describing race and gender disparities in education for use in meetings with community members, policy-makers and legislators
• Organize community meetings for female students of color to share their stories and perspectives about the need for education reform with legal and policy advocates
• Begin representing individual girls of color in Title IX complaints