John Marshall Law School

1. Does your law school intentionally seek out LGBTQ+ prospective students?
Yes
a. If so, how and where are your efforts directed?

Yes. The John Marshall Law School seeks diverse students of all backgrounds, including LGBTQ+ students. In 2018, John Marshall sent representatives to the WERQ Chicago LGBTQ job fair to recruit potential JD, LLM, and MJ students.

2. Does your law school's welcome packet for admitted students include mention of identity group support for LGBTQ+ students, as well as for students of color or other minorities?
Yes

Yes. The John Marshall Law School’s brochure discusses diversity at John Marshall to prospective students. The brochure describes our student affinity groups, including OUTLaw (Gay & Lesbian Students and Allies) and our Asian Pacific, Black, Latinx, and Middle Eastern student associations.

3. Does your school offer students the option to self-identify as LGBTQ+ in admissions applications or post-enrollment forms?
Yes

Yes. The John Marshall Law School’s application for admission allows applicants the opportunity to self-identify as LGBTQ+.

4. Does your law school offer transgender students who have not legally changed their names the ability to have their name of choice on admission applications or post enrollment forms?
Yes

Yes. The John Marshall Law School’s “Name, Gender, Prefix, and Pronoun Changes in Student and Employee Records” policy allows students to update their preferred names on student records without a legal name change. The legal name will remain in the law school’s student records system for reporting purposes unless the individual’s name is legally changed and that change is presented to the law school. The JMLS admission application allows applicants to include a preferred first name but the legal name is retained on the application. The student’s legal name will be used for completing character-and-fitness and other bar-related forms unless the name is legally changed and presented to the law school.

5. Does your law school provide any annual scholarships specifically for LGBTQ+ students?
Yes

Yes. For the last three years, John Marshall has awarded the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender scholarship to one scholarship recipient each year.

6. Does your law school provide funding, including travel support, for LGBTQ+ students to participate in LGBTQ+-focused learning and career services opportunities?
Yes
a. If so, please provide details and examples of when and how those opportunities have been utilized.

Yes. The Student Professional Development Fund (PDF) was established to defray a portion of travel costs and other expenses incurred by JMLS students who participate in professional activities that are not otherwise funded by the law school.

A student may submit an application for a variety of legal or law-related professional development activities, including LGBTQ+-focused learning and career services opportunities. Students who find opportunities that they would like to explore complete an online application. If the application is approved, they are reimbursed for a portion of their documented expenses. This opportunity is available throughout the year.

7. Does your law school actively seek to employ diverse staff/faculty/administrators, including visible, out LGBTQ+ individuals?
Yes
a. If so, please detail how and where recruitment efforts are directed

Yes. The law school seeks to employ a diverse workforce. Every job posting includes a non-discrimination statement (see below). Further, jobs are posted with neutral internal and external resources/sites and with specialty resources, as applicable.

“The John Marshall Law School, finding any invidious discrimination inconsistent with the mission of free academic inquiry, does not discriminate in admission, services, or employment on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic characteristics, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.”

The law school faculty has received training from outside counsel about proper interview protocol and the importance of maintaining objectivity. The training included a review of federal, state, and local regulation. Unless a candidate self identified (for example, through their scholarship, presentations, etc.), the Selection & Appointment Committee’s (S&A) hiring process does not inquire into a candidate’s sexual orientation. The S&A committee has interviewed LGBTQ candidates, but the question of a candidate’s sexual orientation was never raised. The law school is mindful of the need for diversity and inclusion, and works within allowable constraints to achieve its objectives.

The law faculty has also had presentations regarding implicit bias.

8. Please identify, to your knowledge, how many out LGBTQ+ faculty your law school employs (if any)
The law school has at least three out LGBTQ full-time faculty members (two female and one male), including one female of color.
How many out LGBTQ+ faculty of color does your institution currently employ in total?
1
9. Please identify, to your knowledge, how many out LGBTQ+ staff/administrators?
The law school has at least six out LGBTQ staff members, including one of color.
How many out LGBTQ+ staff members/administrators of color does your institution currently employ in total?
1
10. Does your law school provide benefits such as health insurance, family medical leave, parental leave, and nontraditional family planning such as in vitro fertilization and/or adoptive benefits on equal terms to same-sex couples who are married or in registered domestic partnerships as are provided to different-sex married or registered domestic partner couples?
Yes
a. If so, please summarize or reproduce your policy here

Yes. All eligible employees may elect benefits, regardless of relationship status. Employees who elect benefits may elect to cover a same- or different-sex spouse or a same- or different-sex domestic partner. Illinois does not require domestic partnership registration for either same- or different-sex domestic partnership; therefore, additional documentation is required as evidence of the relationship before carrier approval of coverage.

With respect to specific coverage, adopted children are covered under the benefits plan; adoption assistance is not a covered benefit. Diagnosis of infertility issues is a covered benefit; treatment is not covered.
The JMLS employee plan is a self-insured Blue Cross Blue Shield PPO plan.
JMLS complies with FMLA and has short-term and long-term disability plans for medical leaves. JMLS also has a parental leave policy (mother and father).

11. Does your law school offer the aforementioned health benefits to students and their same-sex spouses/partners?
Yes
a. If so, please summarize or reproduce your policy here

Yes. The student health insurance plan is a fully insured plan and provides benefits for nontraditional family planning, such as in vitro fertilization. If a student enrolled in the student health insurance plan adopts a child, then he or she can sign the child up as a dependent using a qualifying event form, but adoption assistance is not a covered benefit. Students who elect benefits may elect to cover a same- or different-sex spouse or a same- or different-sex domestic partner. Illinois does not require domestic partnership registration for either same- or different-sex domestic partnership; therefore, additional documentation is required as evidence of the relationship before carrier approval of coverage.

There is no specific medical leave program for students. Determinations of leave/accommodation are made on a case-by-case basis based on medical documentation provided by the student.

12. Does your law school offer transition-related health benefits to transgender and/or transitioning employees?
No
a. If so, please summarize or reproduce your policy here

No. The employee policy does not cover transition-related services.

13. Does your school offer the same transition-related healthcare benefits to students and their partners/spouses?
Yes
a. If so, please summarize or reproduce your policy here (or you may email a copy of your policy to rishell@lgbtbar.org):

Yes. The student health insurance plan, underwritten by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, offers transition-related healthcare benefits to students. Coverage is 80% for in-network providers and 60% for out-of-network providers.

Benefits for covered services for gender reassignment surgery, including related services and supplies, will be provided the same as for any other condition. Following is an overview of the diagnoses and procedures associated with gender reassignment:

Diagnoses:

  • Transsexualism
  • Dual role transvestism
  • Gender identity disorder of childhood
  • Other gender identity disorders
  • Gender identity disorder, unspecified
  • Encounter for attention to artificial vagina
  • Personal history of sex reassignment

Procedures:

  • Intersex surgery; male to female
  • Intersex surgery; female to male
14. Do all students at your law school have access to counseling and/or therapy services either through the law school or the larger University?
Yes
15. Does your law school provide at least bi-annual mandatory diversity and inclusion training that incorporates robust LGBTQ+ curriculum, for all staff/faculty/administrators?
Yes
16. Does your law school provide a gender-inclusive restroom in any and/or all law school buildings?
Yes
a. How is that restroom identified (i.e., what does the signage say, is it identified on building maps, is there a gender-inclusive restroom policy that applies to all restrooms and where is that statement published, etc.)?

Yes. Several single stall, non-gender specific restrooms are available at various locations through the school so students may privately access whatever type of restroom feels most comfortable. These facilities are labeled “All-Gender Restrooms.”

While The John Marshall Law School does not have formal policy published, the school promotes inclusivity by offering multiple gender-inclusive restrooms on campus. Four restrooms are located in highly populated areas including: the primary corridor on the 1st floor and The Student Commons space. These restrooms are clearly marked with signage stating: All Gender Restroom. Additionally. The school has six additional restrooms throughout the campus that are ADA compliant, single-use restrooms and are gender inclusive. These restrooms are marked with signage that includes images of both sex.

As future capital projects are planned and initiated, future gender-inclusive restrooms will be created. In Summer 2019, the school is scheduled to complete construction on a new collaborative study space that includes an additional gender inclusive restroom.

17. Does your law school have one or more annual LGBTQ+ course offerings (e.g., LGBT Law and Policy, Sexual Orientation and the Law, Gender and the Law (taught with trans-inclusive and focused materials), etc.)?
Yes
a. If so, please list course names

Yes. LGBTQ issues are raised and discussed in a number of classes.

Below are a few:

  • Sexual Orientation Law (JD-168)
  • Pro Bono Clinic section focusing on transgender issues (JD-018). The course title is now General Civil Litigation, but it includes transgender name change work
  • Employment Discrimination (JD-275)
  • Gender, Race, and Class (JD-287GR)
  • Education Law: Student Rights (JD-523)
  • Law in Film (JD-167)
18. Does your law school have an active, visible LGBTQ+ law student group that is supported by the institution?
Yes
19. Does your law school have a hate/bias incident policy that students are required to follow?
Yes
a. If so, does that process specifically identify sexual orientation, gender identity, or both as protected categories?

John Marshall’s Non-Discrimination Policy states as follows: “The John Marshall Law School, finding any invidious discrimination inconsistent with the mission of free academic inquiry, does not discriminate in admission, services, or employment on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic characteristics, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.” (https://www.jmls.edu/policy/non-discrimination.php).

The Student Protection from Discrimination and Harassment states that JMLS “does not tolerate discrimination against any student based on his or her race, color, sex, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, sexual orientation, and gender identity. This policy applies to all aspects of the educational environment including admissions, educational programs and services and extracurricular activities.” The policy also sets forth steps for students to follow to make a complaint and outlines the investigative process.

(https://www.jmls.edu/policy/pdf/student/student protection-discrimination-harassment.pdf).

JMLS also maintains a web-based Harassment/Bias Incident Reporting form that allows students to report incidents of harassment or bias based on categories that include, but are not limited to, gender identity and expression and sexual orientation. (https://www.jmls.edu/security/discrimination-form.php).

b. is there a clear hate bias/incident reporting process for students/faculty/staff to utilize if necessary?
Yes
20. Please describe all additional ways, not identified through your responses, that your law school works to be safe, inclusive, and welcoming to LGBTQ+ students, faculty, and administrators:

In addition to Chicago having a positive, accepting, and welcoming LGBTQ climate, in 2016, The John Marshall Law School was named to the Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame. We are the first Chicago law school to receive this honor.

JMLS was named a “Friend of the Community,” and recognized as a center for LGBTQ advocacy and scholarship in Illinois, and for the work we do to promote equal rights under the law and diversity. JMLS invites and welcomes LGBTQ students. We encourage applicants who wish to self-identify to do so in the application process.

The law school has a Student Support and Emergency Team that can address the concerns of any student experiencing difficulties. The law school also has a food pantry for students and employees in need. The law school has an emergency fund to assist students in need.
The law school has two deans (one faculty, one staff) devoted to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion matters. The staff DEI dean also maintains a physical DEI office on campus. The law school has a faculty diversity committee.

The law school sponsors an annual Diversity Week that includes programming about LGBTQ+ issues.