RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF GOVERNORS
TO ADOPT PROCEDURES FOR REPORTING INSTANCES
OF BIAS IN THE PHILADELPHIA LEGAL SYSTEM

WHEREAS, bias and the perception of bias create an impediment to the fair and efficient functioning of our legal system;

WHEREAS, the Philadelphia Bar Association has for many years engaged in and supported efforts to promote fairness in the legal system;

WHEREAS, in 1999, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has established a Committee on Racial and Gender Bias in the Justice System to help in maintaining a fair and impartial system of justice for all Pennsylvanians;

WHEREAS, the Philadelphia Bar Association presently has no mechanism to gather and evaluate information and anecdotal evidence regarding instances of any bias in the Philadelphia legal system;

WHEREAS, the Ad Hoc Committee on Gender, Racial and Ethnic Bias was created by the Philadelphia Bar Association to develop procedures for reporting instances of gender, race and ethnic bias in the Philadelphia legal system;

WHEREAS, the Philadelphia Bar Association has supported efforts to strengthen and expand the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act ("PHRA") to be consistent with the Philadelphia Fair Practices Ordinance, the anti-discrimination ordinance that applies to all citizens of Philadelphia, by resolving both to support all efforts to maintain the effectiveness of the PHRA and to expand its coverage to include sexual orientation as a protected class;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Governors:

1) adopt the attached Procedures for Reporting Instances of Bias in the Legal System on the basis of all classes of persons protected by the Philadelphia Fair Practices Ordinance;

2) create a special committee to be called the Committee to Promote Fairness in the Philadelphia Legal System;

3) authorize the Chancellor to promulgate information about the Procedures to lawyers, judges, court personnel, and the general public; and

4) authorize the Chancellor to take such other action as may be appropriate to implement this Resolution.

PHILADELPHIA BAR ASSOCIATION
BOARD OF GOVERNORS
ADOPTED: DECEMBER 20, 1999