Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC
June 2018 Newsletter
Greetings from Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC!

Greetings! Thank you for subscribing to the newsletter for Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC. This monthly newsletter keeps you informed about the legal and activism work we are doing to support LGBTQI, polyamorous, and other nontraditional families.

In this month’s newsletter:

  • Scholarships are still available for Diana’s Courageous Conversations workshop at Omega Women’s Leadership Center August 3rd-5th!

  • Diana & Andy will teach at the 30th Annual LGBT Bar Association Lavender Law Conference August 8-10th in NYC

  • Andy will speak on Transformative Justice at the World Fellowship Center in July

  • Where in the world are Diana and Andy?

Scholarships are still available for Diana’s Courageous Conversations workshop at Omega Women’s Leadership Center
August 3rd-5th!

Diana is delighted and honored to be teaching her first full weekend intensive at Omega this August! For more information and to register, visit the Omega workshop registration page.


Scholarships are still available for three women, and we encourage you to apply and spread the word! Diana is thrilled to support women with this invaluable training at low-cost.

We particularly encourage women who hold marginalized identities and experiences to apply for this scholarship, including women who are survivors of intimate partner violence or other trauma, women of color, queer and trans women, disabled and chronically ill women, and women facing immigration difficulties who hope to create breakthroughs in confidence and communication.

Act now: The deadline for scholarship applications is June 29th. Scholarship information is HERE!

Courageous Conversations for Women:
Empowered Communication to Transform your Life

Do you avoid conversations that involve critical feedback, disagreement, or saying no? Do you ask for less than what you really want? Are you looking for a way to deepen your relationships?

When we skip or mishandle important conversations to avoid conflict, we miss opportunities for connection and compassionate problem-solving. We also don’t get what we want, leading to dissatisfaction. In a professional environment, courageous communication is an essential leadership tool to become a strong supervisor or advance on a team. In personal relationships, these skills help us manifest the relationships we want and enhance intimacy.

Join mediator and communication educator Diana Adams to hone techniques for empathetic, assertive communication during conflict, including roleplay, active listening, verbal de-escalation, boundary-setting, Non-Violent Communication, and mediation. Throughout the workshop you:

  • Uncover internal and external obstacles to communication with an intersectional lens

  • Learn to advocate for yourself to improve your relationships

  • Plan a courageous conversation or two that you will have when you return home

All women who want to enhance communication skills to be more powerful in their personal and professional relationships are welcome.


For more information about Diana’s empowerment teaching, check out the new website!

Diana & Andy will Teach at the 30th Annual LGBT Bar Association Lavender Law Conference August 8-10th in NYC

Diana and Andy are both excited to once again attend and speak at the annual LGBT Bar Association Lavender Law Conference, this year back in New York City!  


They will both be there all three days of the conference, and will each be speaking at the following times:

Wednesday, August 8th: 2:00-3:30pm
(Concurrent Workshop Session B)

Andy and Diana will speak on a panel regarding
Trauma-Informed Legal Practice  

In many practice areas, our job as attorneys is to support traumatized clients in rendering their painful experiences legible, credible, and able to neatly fit into legal frameworks of relief. When we work with incarcerated clients, detained clients, clients who are the targets of institutional and state violence and oppression, and clients who are otherwise at intersections of identity and experience that coexist with significant trauma, it is our responsibility as ethical practitioners to best serve them by ensuring that we are culturally competent to work with that trauma. In many cases, we find ourselves grappling with the physiological, psychological, and somatic effects of our client’s trauma without having any tools to understand or support those effects, or the secondary effects on ourselves. In this workshop, a panel of attorneys and advocates who provide direct services to a wide range of populations will discuss the concrete effects of trauma on the brain and body; how to build trust in attorney-client relationships; work towards your client’s physical and emotional safety; and support clients through interviews, triggers, testimony, and more. Working with traumatized clients, particularly as a member of an affected population, requires a constant practice to prevent secondary and vicarious trauma as well, and this panel will discuss strategies to ensure that our work to support clients in crisis is as sustainable as possible. We live, and have learned how to practice law, in a world infused both by trauma and by ignorance about trauma. It is valuable to share space openly about it and to gain skills to take better care of our clients and ourselves.

Speakers: Diana Adams, Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC; Virginia Goggin, NYC Anti-Violence Project; Andy Izenson, Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC; Mat Dos Santos, American Civil Liberties Union, Jack Saul, International Trauma Studies Program

Thursday, August 9th: 10:45am- 12:15pm
(Concurrent Workshop Session D)

Andy will be speaking on the following panel:

Non-binary and Intersex Rights:
Explosion of Growth; Vacuum of Understanding

The past two years have seen the beginning of an explosion in visibility and rights for people whose sex or gender is outside of the binary male and female system, with over a dozen jurisdictions having addressed the issue in some way. There has been litigation and legislation regarding the rights of people who are intersex to bodily autonomy and of people who are non-binary to accurate gender markers. There are other important legal issues related to restrooms, marriage, medicine, and the rights of minors involved. If we are to someday live in a world that recognizes that sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation have endless variations, with all possibilities valued and respected, we all need to understand these issues. Join this panel discussion addressing recent developments and what comes next.

Speakers: Toby Adams, Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project; Charlie Arrowood, Transcend Legal; Celeste Fiore, Argentino Family Law & Child Advocacy, LLC; J. Remy Green, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP; Alesdair H. Ittelson, interACT; Andy Izenson, Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC; Shawn Thomas Meerkamper, Transgender Law Center

Thursday, August 9th, 2:00-3:30
(Concurrent Session E)

Andy will be speaking on the following panel:

Bi-Sections: The Intersections of Bisexuality, Gender, Advocacy,
and How its Explicit Inclusion Strengthens Sex Discrimination Arguments

This panel will consist of two parts. The first half of the panel will begin with a discussion of the intersections of bisexuality and gender, with a particular emphasis on intersex, transgender, and non-binary people. Stereotypes of bisexual people, bisexual erasure, and discrimination in social situations and the legal world varies in presentation and effect based upon gender. This is especially true for members of the intersex, transgender, and non-binary communities. However, these communities are often either not thought of, or are conflated as one and the same. Panelists will highlight the similarities and differences to explain why each of these communities must be seen as unique when considering the ways in which bisexual issues affect them. In the second half, panelists will discuss the frequently overlooked place of bisexuals in LGBTQ litigation and other legal activism. Bisexual members of our community are directly affected by rulings and legislation targeted at gays and lesbians without being addressed or having their welfare considered in many of the relevant briefs, amici, or opinions. In other areas, such as in the contexts of Title VII and marriage litigation, bisexuality (like transgender and nonconforming gender identities) sheds light on the absurdities of rigidly dichotomous sex-based legal standards. Bisexuality also helps illustrate how sexual orientation discrimination is a form of sex discrimination. Panelists will bring their perspectives as attorneys, professors, and bisexual advocates to discuss the actual and potential contributions of bisexuals and bisexuality to legal strategy and activism and the harm suffered by members of a community that frequently renders their contributions, needs, and existence invisible and irrelevant.

Speakers: Toby Adams, Intersex & Genderqueer Recognition Project; Aisha Davis, Loevy & Loevy; Heron Greenesmith, MAPS; Andy Izenson, Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC; Kathleen Perrin, Equality Case Files, Inc.

On Friday, August 10th, Andy and Diana will both be part of the day-long annual meeting of the U.S. LGBT Family Law Institute (FLI) as some of the New York representatives. As you may remember, our own Of Counsel attorney Bill Singer is the founder of the U.S. FLI and the International Director. Diana is the Director of Euro LGBT Family Law Institute and hosted the first meeting of that group in April in Frankfurt.

If you'll also be at Lavender Law, find us there!

Andy will speak on Transformative Justice
at the World Fellowship Center in July

On July 13th, Andy will teach "The Practice of Transformative Justice: Tear Down the Prison in Your Head" at the World Fellowship Center in Conway, NH.  

We firmly believe that the infrastructure of the civil and criminal courts is rarely the effective conflict resolution tool that participants hope it will be, and that an out-of-court process in which clients seek to work collaboratively from a basis of shared understanding and mutual care is not only more consistent with our personal politics but also frequently more efficient, effective, and sustainable.

We believe wholeheartedly that alternative justice tools are powerful when turned to the interests of members of marginalized or over-policed communities, who are frequently underserved and targeted for violence by the state and its structures of justice, and particularly those who have existing trauma that would render interaction with those structures far more torturous.

Alternative justice systems and conflict resolution paradigms allow marginalized people to strengthen community bonds, resist disposability, and build power and resilience that is not dependent on state violence. This empowerment is beneficial for communities as well as for their traumatized and disempowered members, and the creation of tools for individual empowerment with regards to institutional abuse is a way of taking an unambiguous stand in defense of those community members.

To learn more about the Transformative Justice and other Alternative Justice Systems work our firm has been doing, visit our new webpage on the subject here.

Where In the World are Diana and Andy?

Diana travels between New York City and Frankfurt, Germany, managing our European and NY offices, and is available to clients in both regions, with frequent touring of the U.S. and Europe in between. Diana welcomes opportunities to meet with clients and do speaking appearances along her travels.

When not stated, Diana is in Frankfurt, Germany seeing clients in that region in person and clients around the world via video conference.

  • June 23-July 15: Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary
  • July 17-24:  St. Petersburg/Tampa, FL
  • August 3-5: Teaching Courageous Conversations for Women at Omega Institute
  • August 6-12: Available for client meetings in NYC, and speaking at the Lavender Law conference with Andy
  • October 12-14: London

Andy is in our office in New York City and unless otherwise noted below, he is available to clients there.

Wishing you and your family,
        in whatever shape it may take,
               joy, solidarity, and resistance,
                    from the team at Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC,
                            Diana, Bill, Andy, and Amy
Copyright © 2018 Diana Adams Law & Mediation, PLLC, All rights reserved.  
The primary purpose of this newsletter is to be informative. Some material herein could constitute attorney advertising.

No information herein constitutes legal advice. If you would like to seek legal advice from Diana Adams Law & Mediation, please request a consultation.

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