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From left, Paige Suozzi, chief of staff for the Florida Coastal School of Law Student Bar Association; Anthony Egbert, association external vice president; Kristen Sinnott, association internal vice president; Karen Winston, attorney with the Jacksonv...
Jax Daily Record Monday, Apr. 22, 201312:00 PM EST

Coastal students donate $31K to JALA


Jacksonville Area Legal Aid received a $31,000 donation Thursday for its Baker Defense Project from The Student Bar Association at Florida Coastal School of Law.

Proceeds were raised through efforts such as Florida Coastal's Barrister's Ball and charity golf tournament.

"We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Student Bar Association for their generous donation, which will ensure that the men and women detained at Baker will continue to receive high-quality representation," said Karen Winston of legal aid, former Equal Justice Works Fellow and Baker Defense Project creator.

"The students volunteered countless hours to ensure the events were a success and the project would continue," said Winston.

The project provides free and full representation to foreign nationals detained at the Baker County Jail.

If the nationals have a legal right to remain in the United States, that right is pursued on behalf of the detainee by Winston through the project.

Winston also advocates for improved living conditions, access to medical care and access to counsel on behalf of all immigrants detained at Baker, one of the five immigration detention facilities in Florida.

"Our committee members worked tirelessly to make all of it possible and I'm personally honored and proud that our students were able to come together to support such a noble cause," said Stefano Portigliatti, association president.

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