Business and community leaders recently collaborated with judges from the North Dade Justice Center to present the 54th Law Day celebration featuring guest speaker John Rivera, president of the Police Benevolent Association.
The theme of Law Day 2012 was “No Courts, No Justice, No Freedom” emphasizing the importance of the courts and its role in ensuring equal access to justice for all in America. Law Day is observed nationally each year in May to help promote a greater understanding of the American justice system and commemorate “a commitment to the rule of law enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States ”
Judges overseeing Law Day 2012 included Associate Administrative Judge Linda Singer Stein, Judge Myriam Lehr, Judge Eric Hendon, Judge Charles K. Johnson, Judge Fleur J. Lobree, Judge Caryn C. Schwartz, Judge Sheldon Schwartz and Judge Rodolfo A. Ruiz.
Chief Judge Joel Brown noted, “This year, because the Clerk of Courts sustained a major cut in funding, your court system may slow down. We must all work together to support the judicial system – it starts with legislation and continues with funding essential for us to operate.”
The Law Day event continued with an invocation by North Miami Beach Mayor George Vallejo; the Miami-Dade Police Department Honor Guard; Claudia Sanchez singing the National Anthem; and the Pledge of Allegiance led by the Bailiffs of the North Dade Justice Center.
Taking the podium, Rivera noted, “Even in the harshest of economic times, our courts need essential resources to fulfill their constitutional responsibility – any justice delayed is justice denied. Law enforcement and the judiciary must continue to work together to ensure our great nation remains great. The government’s first priority is keeping people safe and if we don‘t account for it with the resources necessary, we will with lives and freedom.”
During Law Day, it was announced the first place winner of the North Dade Bar Association’s Law Day essay contest for students was Stephanie Bent of Doctor’s Charter School, Miami Shores. Her essay, “Under-funding of the Judicial Branch” highlights her premise “Having an underfunded judicial branch causes the government to work sluggishly and inefficiently, which is exactly what the founders of our great nation were against.”
Ruling Law Day 2012 “ highly successful,” North Dade Justice Center judges expressed special thanks to special supporters including: Sabadell United Bank; Higer, Lichter & Givner, LLP; Aventura Marketing Council; Ronald L. Book, P.A.; Cuban American Bar Association; Dade League of Prosecutors; Gwen S. Cherry Black Women Lawyers Association; Haitian Lawyers Association; Law Office of Russel Lazega; North Dade Bar Association and the Wilkie D. Ferguson, Jr. Bar Association, with support from other bar associations and companies.