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Monday, July 25 • 8:45am - 9:45am
D5: The Role of the Law Library in Serving the Illiterate in Their Quest for Access to Justice

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Target Audience: Reference librarians and others interested in access to justice issues

Learning Outcomes:
1. Participants will be able to explain the issues affecting the functionally illiterate in their access to justice.
2. Participants will be able to design a reference plan to be able to assist functionally illiterate law library customers.

Many litigants who can neither afford an attorney nor qualify for any assistance programs find their way to the local law library to see if they can proceed on their own. A significant number of these individuals would be classified as illiterate. The National Institute of Literacy estimates that more than 20 percent of adults read at or below a fifth-grade level. Librarians typically supply these customers with written materials because they are the only (or easiest) resources available. Nevertheless, such texts may be too difficult for these litigants, so what other assistance can librarians provide? This program will examine some of the hurdles that face the illiterate as they try to navigate the legal system. It will also offer some ideas on how to help such individuals who come to the law library seeking assistance.

Monday July 25, 2011 8:45am - 9:45am EDT
PCC-Room 204(B)

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