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Bar Buzz: ACLU to honor Eric Janus

Eric Janus

Eric Janus

Professor Eric Janus of the Mitchell Hamline School of Law will receive the 22nd annual Earl Larson Award this week from the ACLU of Minnesota.

The Earl Larson Award, named for the U.S. District Court judge who was one of the founders of the ACLU of Minnesota, is presented to an attorney who has shown a lifelong commitment to justice and civil liberties work.

Janus is a leading national expert on sexual violence law and policy. Building on his experience as court-appointed counsel in constitutional litigation challenging Minnesota’s Sexually Dangerous Person Law, he has focused on the boundaries of the state’s ability to use civil commitment to protect public safety. He has served on the Minnesota Sex Offender Civil Commitment Advisory Task Force and is a Contributing Editor to the “Sex Offender Law Report.” Janus has worked with the ACLU-MN to challenge the detention of individuals in the Minnesota Sex Offender treatment program, which the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota found to be unconstitutional.

Janus is the former president and dean of Mitchell Hamline School of Law.

The ACLU also will present it first Changemaker Award to the NAACP Minneapolis due to the NAACP’s outstanding commitment to equality, justice and the empowering of underserved communities.

The ACLU-MN and NAACP Minneapolis have partnered on a number of projects, including the release of the ACLU’s report on racial disparities in policing, two successful Warrant Resolution Days and litigation to increase police transparency.

The event is a 5:30 p.m. reception and 6:30 p.m. ceremony on Wednesday, Nov. 28 at The Depot Minneapolis, 225 3rd Ave S.

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