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University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

NEWS RELEASE

News Bureau Schofield Hall 201 Eau Claire, WI 54702
phone: (715) 836-4741
fax: (715) 836-2900

Student Chapter of Amnesty International
To Hold Forum and Debate on Death Penalty 

MAILED: March 22, 2002

         EAU CLAIRE  April 1-8 is the National Week of Student Action for Amnesty International. Over 600 student chapters will direct their energy toward abolishing the death penalty.
         The UW-Eau Claire student chapter of Amnesty International will host a death penalty forum titled "Lethal Injustice" at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 3, in Schofield Auditorium. A debate on the death penalty will follow at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4, in the Menominee Room in Davies Center. The student group also will have an informational table in Davies Tuesday through Thursday.
         According to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the death penalty is a violation of the right to life. Currently, the United States is the only industrialized nation that still practices capital punishment. Amnesty International, a worldwide organization that peacefully defends human rights through grass root actions, opposes the death penalty in all situations.
         Wednesday's forum will feature two speakers: Gary Gauger and Ed Garvey. Gauger was sent to death row in Illinois for the murder of his elderly parents, Ruth and Morris Gauger, in 1993. Thanks to the hard work of those who believed in his innocence, he was ultimately released and exonerated, and two other men, James Schneider and Randy Miller, were arrested for the crime. Since his release, Gauger, who opposes the death penalty for his parents' murderers, has joined Murder Victims' Families for Reconciliation to speak out against the death penalty.
         Garvey practices law in Madison at Garvey & Stoddard, where the emphasis is on protection of the environment. Federal Judge Barbara Crabb appointed Garvey as counsel for all inmates at the Supermax prison in Boscobel. He will address problems in the criminal justice system, including the death penalty, and will give the forum a local spin by addressing the human rights abuses he worked to abolish in the Boscobel Supermax prison.
         Following the forum, audience members will have the opportunity to ask questions and take action against the death penalty by signing a petition.
         Thursday's debate will feature Dr. Donald Mowry, director of Service Learning at UW-Eau Claire and a member of the ACLU; Chrissy Smith, student co-president of AI-UW-Eau Claire; Dr. Erwin Steiner, associate professor of management and marketing at UW-Eau Claire and instructor of a course on business law; and Dr. Daniel Strouthes, assistant professor in UW-Eau Claire's department of geography and anthropology and instructor of a course on the anthropology of law. Mowry and Smith will argue for abolition of the death penalty, while Steiner and Strouthes will present arguments in support of the death penalty. Audience members will be able to submit questions during the debate. Admission is free and open to the public for both events.
         For more information, contact Amnesty International student group co-presidents Chrissy Smith, at 858-1167 or smithcm@uwec.edu, or Sarah Aldridge, at 855-2925 or aldridsv@uwec.edu.
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UW-Eau Claire Home  News Bureau
Judy Berthiaume
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 201
(715) 836-4741
newsbur@uwec.edu

Updated: March 22, 2002