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Upcoming Events

  • July 18, 2017 - Executive Director Lisette McCormick will speak as part of a panel presentation on implicit bias during the PBI’s Civil Rights Symposium.
  • September 14, 2017 - The Commission will hold its quarterly meeting in Harrisburg.
  • October 16, 2017 - The Commission is co-sponsoring a special event in honor of Retired Judge Doris Smith-Ribner, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court. The program, entitled “Trailblazers from Allegheny County: Honoring Judge Doris Smith-Ribner and Her Contributions to the Legal Profession,” will feature presentations on the intersection of race and gender and the special challenges facing women of color in the legal profession.

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view the report

The Interbranch Commission implements recommendations from the Report of The Pennsylvania Supreme Court Committee on Racial, and Gender Bias in The Justice System. View the Report

Equal Opportunity and
Diversity Committee

The main priority of the Equal Opportunity and Diversity Committee is increasing diversity in court employment and appointments. The Committee recently produced an extensive diversity manual, Creating a Diverse Workforce in the Pennsylvania Courts: A Manual for Success and distributed it to all of the Commonwealth's judicial districts. The Committee is planning a series of educational sessions for Pennsylvania’s judges and court administrators on employment.  One such educational session took place on July 28, 2011 before the State Conference of Trial Judges.

In connection with its successful effort to have the Pennsylvania Supreme Court adopt a system-wide policy on non-discrimination and equal employment opportunity, the Committee is working to amend Pennsylvania's Judicial Conduct Code and Rules of Professional Conduct to prohibit judges and attorneys from engaging in discrimination or harassment in the course of legal proceedings. The Policy and the Committee’s proposed amendments to the Judicial Conduct Code and the Rules of Professional Conduct are set forth at right, under Reports.

In addition, the Committee has completed its study on best practices for court appointment procedures. The Committee's goal is to provide all Pennsylvania judicial districts with uniform model procedures and best practices that provide the broadest opportunities for all interested parties. The Committee’s letter to all judicial districts outlining the essential elements of model procedures is set forth at right, under Reports.

The Committee's priorities are based on the Final Report of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court Committee on Racial, and Gender Bias in the Justice System. For detailed information on the study's findings and priorities as they relate to equal opportunity and diversity, please see Chapter Eight of the Report.