Minority and Justice Commission
Conference Call Minutes
January 22, 1999
The Research Subcommittee of the Washington State Minority and Justice Commission conference call began at 10:00 a.m. Those who participated were Judge Monica J. Benton, Judge David H. Armstrong, Judge James D. Cayce, Larry M. Fehr, José E. Gaitán, Ms. Mary Elizabeth McKnew, Robert Lamb, Jr., Dean Donna Claxton Deming, and Ms. Donna V. McConnell-Adams.
The Research Subcommittee conference call agenda items included the purpose of the Research subcommittee, suggestions for future research, and a brief discussion of the Courts of Limited Jurisdiction Assessment Survey Report, 1995-1997, by Carol J. and W. Laurence Wilson.
The subcommittee discussed possible research topics:
- Women of Color in the legal profession/court system.
- Reviewing the impact of research studies that have been conducted nationwide.
- Looking at past Minority and Justice Commission research projects and comparing them to current data.
The subcommittee discussed the possibility of performing a literature review to examine what writing currently exists on racial and ethnic bias in the courts. A literature review has the potential to assist the subcommittee in educating the Commission on what kind of reports and programs have been completed on a national level. A literature review will also assist the Research subcommittee in not duplicating its efforts. After the literature review is complete, an evaluation of the results could direct the focus of the Research subcommittee and the Minority and Justice Commission.
Subcommittee members discussed the following suggestions for the literature review:
- To publish an annotated bibliography as part of the project.
- Conduct a Meta-Analysis to review the content of research and test it for validity and reliability.
- The literature review could assist in developing remediation techniques and programs.
- The literature review can identify successful programs/practices from other states.
The subcommittee believed it would be helpful to know if any other commission or task force has sponsored a literature review. Ms. Donna V. McConnell-Adams will contact the National Center for State Courts about this question.
The subcommittee discussed the importance of the literature review. After thorough discussion the subcommittee concluded the literature review could lead to the identification of research priorities and ideas for remediation workshops.
Robert Lamb, Jr. briefly discussed racial profiling issues and some work the Council on Racial and Ethnic Bias has conducted. Paulette Brown of the Toronto Bar Association is the contact person.
Judge Kenneth H. Kato and Judge Monica J. Benton will develop recommendations for the Executive Committee to consider.
The conference call ended at 10:45 a.m.