Civil Liberties in a Blue State: Are We Safe?

Date: September 29, 2023

Time: Noon to 1:15 pm

Event Type: Live/Livestream
Members and Non-Members may attend our forums for free

Venue: Maple Room, Inn at the 5th, Market District
205 E 6th Ave

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Other Details:

Enter the Maple Room at Inn at the 5th near the north stairs to 5th Avenue. Details at An optional lunch provided by Marche Provisions may be purchased; please, no outside food. Park in the lot north of the railroad tracks on High or park west of Market Square on 5th.
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Many have seen a plethora of restrictive policies being enacted across the country in recent years. Many are very concerned about the residents of those states, who must endure restrictive policies concerning health care, LGBTQIA2S+, trans rights, teaching U.S. history, books on library shelves, as well as efforts to block voting access, to name a few. These restrictive policies are happening in red states, right? It could never happen in Oregon, right? Maybe we shouldn’t be so confident. Come out and hear about a broad range of attacks from speakers who know what is happening. This program is not to be missed.


Name: Garrett Epps
Title: Professor of Practice
Organization: University of Oregon School of Law

Garrett Epps is Professor of Practice at the University of Oregon School of Law. He returns to us from the University of Baltimore Law School, where he was professor from 2008 to 2021. Before heading east, Professor Epps taught Constitutional Law at Oregon Law, where he was Orlando John and Marian H. Hollis Professor of Law for 16 years. He also has taught at the American University, Boston College, and Duke University. While in Baltimore, he served for 10 years as Supreme Court Correspondent of The Atlantic, publishing more than 400 essays analyzing the Supreme Court’s evolving jurisprudence and constitutional issues generally. His scholarship has appeared in prominent law journals, including Duke Law Journal, North Carolina Law Review, and American University Law Review.Garrett Epps received his LLM and JD from Duke University and an MA from Hollins College.

Name: Bethany Grace Howe
Organization: TransHealth Data Collective and TranswersLLC


Dr. Bethany Grace Howe, Ph.D. (she/her/hers) is a communications specialist for the state of Oregon’s Department of Human Services, as well as plane-hopping communications consultant. A researcher, her 2019 University of Oregon School of Journalism dissertation served as the foundation for four published, peer-reviewed journal articles. This — coupled with her time as a newspaper journalist and columnist, as well as a former secondary and university journalism instructor — means she has spent most of her life working in media, though never doing any one thing for long. In her lack of free time, she also she also serves as a board member for Planned Parenthood of Southwest Oregon, is a stand up comedienne, and is the proud parent of Nola, an eighth-grader who is already a raging pro-LGBTQ advocate. And, oh yeah, she does not literally hop planes, as they are very tall.

Name: Angela Ocana
Title: Acting Director
Organization: Eugene Public Library

Angela Ocaña (she/her) has spent the last twenty-five years working in libraries. She is currently the Acting Director of the Eugene Public Library.

Her work with teens earned her the California Library Association Young Adult Services Award and an American Library Association Emerging Leaders selection. She helped guide the creation of the Teen Space at the Eugene Library and is passionate about serving our community.

A fierce believer in the right to read, she was the 2023 Chair of the Intellectual Freedom Round Table with ALA and now sits as a part of the Executive Board.

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