Michael S. Stein and CJ Griffin Featured in Mid-Market Report on Impact of Firm’s Stein Public Interest Center
Michael S. Stein, Chair and Managing Partner of Pashman Stein Walder Hayden, and CJ Griffin, Director of the Justice Gary S. Stein Public Interest Center at Pashman Stein, were featured in the Mid-Market Report article, “Pashman Stein Pro Bono Work Influences Policy on Jury Discrimination, Police Transparency.” The article, in a Q&A format, includes questions from Law.com reporter Justin Henry about the impact of the firm's Stein Public Interest Center since it was established in 2019, and some of the significant issues tackled, including racial discrimination in jury selection, police transparency, and the segregation on New Jersey’s public schools.
Michael Stein: Our goal was and is to be involved in every significant policy issue that comes into our region and, by and large, we have met that objective. We are involved in virtually every important piece of policy litigation. It almost feels like every argument day, we have at least a matter before the court, which has given our lawyers, young and average age, opportunities to argue before the court and has left everybody with a sense of ownership of this mission.
CJ Griffin: Police transparency and accountability is one of the goals of our public interest center. It’s one of my personal passions. We look for cases where we feel that we can bring impact litigation or other litigation that would advance police transparency and accountability. An example of that was that I just won a landmark case called Richard Rivera v. Union County Prosecutor’s Office in which the Supreme Court of New Jersey held that even though police disciplinary records are exempt under New Jersey’s Open Public Records Act statute, there’s still a common law right of access to them where the public’s interest is significant. That was a decision I’ve been working toward for many, many years because New Jersey’s internal affairs records have always been shrouded in complete secrecy, unlike so many other states, like Florida, where they’re open to the public.
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