For Immediate Release: Thursday, April 26, 2012
For More Information, Contact: Jane Garrott, Executive Director, (608) 257-5741

Law Day Celebrates the American Justice System

Association Provides Free Film and Speaker

MADISON, WI – Tuesday, May 1, will be the 54th annual “Law Day” in Wisconsin, a celebration of the Constitution, courts and American justice system in general.

The theme for Law Day 2012 is “No Courts, No Justice, No Freedom.”  Wisconsin Association for Justice (WAJ) President Ed Vopal on Thursday urged all students and teachers, jurors, and general citizens to help acknowledge the important role the justice system plays in society.

“Courts and juries play a vital role in protecting the rights of citizens,” Vopal said.  “Without that protection, there would be no justice and no freedom for many people.”

The right to a jury trial is guaranteed in both the Wisconsin and United States constitutions.  Our legal system has been under systematic attack in recent years, Vopal said.  He pointed to a recent film that explains the value of the U.S. civil justice system and the powerful threats to its functioning.

“WAJ members have recently provided the award-winning 2011 HBO documentary ‘Hot Coffee’ to their local public libraries around Wisconsin,” Vopal said.  “The film shows the importance of the jury trial, a right many people are unfamiliar with until they need a jury to hear their case and seek justice.”

The “Hot Coffee” film can be provided by WAJ to any public library in Wisconsin, Vopal added, and a WAJ volunteer attorney will be available to answer questions at public screenings.  Libraries in Sun Prairie, Madison and Verona have all scheduled free “Hot Coffee” showings soon.

In addition, the American Bar Association provides Law Day materials such as a planning guide, teaching materials and artwork through the following link: www.lawday.org

“I urge all Wisconsin residents to recognize the importance of Law Day and our valuable justice system,” Vopal said.

In creating Law Day in 1958, former U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “In a very real sense, the world no longer has a choice between force and law.  If civilization is to survive it must choose the rule of law.”

For more information about the documentary "Hot Coffee," or the civil justice system, contact WAJ at (608) 257-2541 or visit www.wisjustice.org.

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The Wisconsin Association for Justice stands with consumers to promote a fair and effective justice system for every citizen, not just the privileged and wealthy.

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