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"The Case for Reparations"

Saturday, October 1, 2022

Reparations, or the idea that the United States owes legal and monetary redress for such discrimination, has gained unprecedented support in recent years. “The Case for Reparations” will explore how centuries of discriminatory practices have created and perpetuated inequality among African American communities with an impact still felt today. This conference will include presentations concerning the national and local history of injustice pointed toward African American communities and the ethical case for reparations as a legal right rather than an apologetic tool. It will also include panel discussions about the legal fight for reparations and local initiatives that have proved successful in providing redress for historical injustice in the state of Georgia.

Approved for 5.0 hours of Georgia CLE credit.

Breakfast Reception & Registration

10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.


Welcome, Announcements & Overview

10:30 a.m. – 10:50 a.m. 

Mary Anne Bobinski, Emory Law Dean
Emily Spears, EPIC President
Constance Schneider and Niamh Creedon-Carey, EPIC Conference Co-Chairs 

Session 1: The Historical Case for Reparations

10:50 a.m. – 11:20 a.m. Presentation
11:20 a.m. – 11:35 a.m. Q&A 

This session will focus on why America’s history dictates the need for reparations. It will primarily focus on instances of severe injustice, such as slavery and Jim Crow laws, that have perpetuated inequality and inhibited growth in local communities even today.

Speaker: Dr. Karcheik Sims-AlvaradoAuthor, Atlanta and the Civil Rights Movement: 1944-1968, and Chair, Fulton County Reparations Task Force

Session 2: The Ethical Case for Reparations

11:40 a.m.  12:10 p.m. Presentation
12:10 p.m. - 12:25 p.m. Q&A

This session will address reparations as a moral and legal obligation imposed upon society. It will focus on several historic case studies involving severe injustice and make the moral and legal case for a reparative response.

Speaker: Dr. Andrew I. Cohen, Director of the Jean Bleer Blumenfeld Center for Ethics and Professor of Philosophy at Georgia State University, Author of Apologies and Moral Repair: Rights, Duties, and Corrective Justice (Routledge 2020) 

Lunch Break

12:25 p.m. – 1:10 p.m.

Session 3: The Legal Case for Reparations

1:10 p.m. – 1:50 p.m. Virtual Panel Presentation
1:50 p.m. – 2:10 p.m. Q&A

This session presents the legal case for reparations by exploring historic instances of governmental and institutional discrimination and how lawyers are developing initiatives for legal reparations. It will further explore lawsuits and legislative initiatives that continue to shape reparation policies.

Phyllis Taite, Professor of Law at Oklahoma City University School of Law
Deadria Farmer-Paellmann, Executive Director of the Restitution Study Group

Moderator: Atteeyah Hollie, Deputy Director, Southern Center for Human Rights

Session 4: Local and Community-Driven Reparation Initiatives

2:10 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Panel Presentation
3:00 p.m. – 3:20 p.m.  Q&A

This session highlights leaders who have fought for reparations in their local communities. It will explore several case studies of injustice in the state of Georgia and how the descendants of those harmed have successfully advocated for reparations.

Donna Stephens, Founder of the Chattahoochee Brick Descendants’ Coalition,
Hattie Whitehead, President of the Linnentown Project, Co-Chair of the Justice & Memory Project, Author of Giving Voice to Linnentown
Dr. Joseph Carter, Founder and Project Coordinator of the Linnentown Project

Moderator: Dr. Sims-Alvarado, Author, Atlanta and the Civil Rights Movement: 1944-1968, and Chair, Fulton County Reparations Task Force

Closing Remarks

3:20 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Constance Schneider & Niamh Creedon-Carey, EPIC Conference Co-Chairs
Rita A. Sheffey, Assistant Dean for Public Service

Recognition of Pro Bono Certificate Recipients

3:30 p.m. – 3:50 p.m.
Dessert Reception to Follow