Almost thirty years ago I was a second-year student in a law school clinic. I was making my first legal visit to a prison. My client, whom I will call "Dina," was meeting me to talk about some visitation issues with her young son. When she came into the visiting room she was poised and professional in demeanor. She began to explain that her son was being cared for by his paternal grandmother. The grandmother was unwilling to bring him to the prison to see her. As a result Dina had not seen her son for several months. Suddenly, and without warning, she broke down and began to sob.
I was hooked. I knew that whatever else I could accomplish in my unfolding legal career, I wanted to make it possible for Dina to see her son.
This turned out to be one of my proudest legal "victories" – I simply visited Dina's own mother to talk to her about the situation. She offered to call the paternal grandmother, and her effort was successful. Dina and her son were finally able to start seeing each other. Soon after my graduation from law school I learned that Dina had been released from prison at her first parole board appearance.
Family Law | Law | Law Enforcement and Corrections
Some Reflections about Three Decades of Working with Incarcerated Mothers,
Women's Rts. L. Rep.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.columbia.edu/faculty_scholarship/3770