Day 2 featured a conversation with a judge from Memphis, Tennessee. This judge talked about the new and innovative approaches taken by the Memphis County Courthouse staff to make the court a friendlier and inviting place for litigants. Some of the features that they talked about were improved lighting, air quality, babysitting services, food for litigants during the court process, and lastly a trial informed approach to serving litigants.
What I mean by trial-informed approach is recognizing and understanding escalating situations in courtrooms. For example, knowing when a litigant may potentially become violent and how to de-escalate the situation. Some of these programs may be impractical given the state of the Massachusetts court system however, this is something to aspire to – to improve the quality of life for lawyers and litigants during the court process.
The second half of the day featured a lecture on opium addiction. The most fascinating fact from this lecture was the fact that more people are killed every year from opium addiction than were killed in Vietnam. Roughly 58,000 Americans were killed in Vietnam. The evening was concluded by a performance from Capitol Steps. Capitol Steps is a satirical song and dance group who poke fun at the events of Capitol Hill and news of the day. The performance capped off a serious day dealing with difficult topics in family law with a little bit of light-hearted humor.
Looking forward to day 3 at AFCC.