W&L Students Organize Annual “Know Your Rights” Event The event will feature a talk from Charlie Schmidt, a public policy associate at the America Civil Liberties Union of Virginia.
Washington and Lee University will host the second annual “Know Your Rights” event on Oct. 23 at 6 p.m. in Stackhouse Theatre located in Elrod Commons. The event will feature a talk from Charlie Schmidt, a public policy associate at the America Civil Liberties Union of Virginia who will cover how to interact with police safely and legally in situations such as at parties and traffic stops. There will also be a brief overview of Virginia state laws surrounding illegal substances and open containers.
The talk is free and open to W&L students, faculty and staff.
W&L senior Courtney Hauck has been the organizer of the event for the past two years and is inspired to participate in an effort to help mitigate student arrests and criminal charges due to students’ and community members’ lack of awareness about their rights.
“I’ve seen too many friends caught in situations where panic and lack of awareness lead to self-incrimination and, by extension, disparate impact to those who can’t afford attorneys,” said Hauck. “This event will address such disparities by providing knowledge that empowers people to exercise their rights in a safe and legal manner.”
This event is a collaboration of many student groups on the undergraduate and law school campuses. Students will be selling baked goods from Sweet Treats Bakery at the event and all money collected will be donated directly to the ACLU of Virginia.
“Know Your Rights” is sponsored by the Roosevelt Institute, Public Interest Law Students Association, Delta Society, the Mudd Center for Ethics, Student Activities, Pi Beta Phi Virginia Theta, and W&L’s Career and Professional Development.