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This page includes links or down-loadable files, training documents, notes, hand-outs, and other conference materials for class or conference participants and anyone else who may be interested.  If you would like to post your ethics or presentation materials here, please e-mail karl.thoennes@ujs.state.sd.us.

Most Recent Addition(s):  December 2012: Various materials for ethics training for court employees used at two NACM conferences in 2012 and various other states and court systems. 

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In two conference presentations in 2012 for the National Association for Court Management, Peter Kiefer and Karl Thoennes offered a session of videos, participant skits, and PowerPoint presentations on ethics for court employees.  These materials have also been used in ethics training sessions for court employees, probation officers, and court reporters in South Dakota, and elsewhere.  The session materials include:

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PowerPoint Slides for a Presentation on Gifts to Court Employees "Gifts Gifts Gifts"

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And here's the accompanying video file that can be embedded in the PowerPoint presentation or played separately: Gifts Gifts Gifts.wmv.  It's a 45MB video file and takes a minute to download.  For instant playback in a classroom setting, right-click the link and "Save Target As" to your local computer. 

 

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PowerPoint Slides for a Presentation on the Ethics of Social Media for Court Employees, "Defriending Mr King"

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And here's the accompanying video file that can be embedded in the PowerPoint presentation or played separately: Defriending Mr King.wmv.  Like the video above, it's a 40 MB video file and takes some time to download.  Again, for instant playback in a classroom setting, right-click the link and "Save Target As" to your local computer.

 

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Norman Meyer and Karl Thoennes delivered a presentation on "Social Media and the Ethical Court Employee" at the 2011 summer conference of the National Association for Court Management in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Session materials for the participants included:

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An extensive article on the topic by Norman Meyer, similarly entitled "Social Media and the Ethical Court Employee."  The article was published in The Court Manager by the National Association for Court Management, Vol. 26, Issue 1.  Norman's article packages and summarizes this quickly evolving topic very well.  A copy can be found at this link.

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In many ethics sessions we tend to skip over the foundational question "what is ethics?"  Karl Thoennes addressed this topic very quickly (summarizing thousands of years of moral and ethical development in about two minutes, ha!) with this  Ethics Overview NACM 2011.docx.

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A one-page summary chart of the NACM Model Code of Conduct for Court Professionals may be helpful to the session participants, found at this link.

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Norman Meyer has prepared an extensive list of references, writings, and examples on the topic of social media in the courts that can be found at this link.

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Coincidentally, the Unified Judicial System in South Dakota recently adopted a new policy on internet and social media use for court employees and published it the day before the NACM presentation on July 11, 2011.  The policy draws from a number of sources and other references and is the product of a great deal of discussion and review.  The social media section may be a good starting point for other court systems considering similar policies. South Dakota's policy can be found at this link.  

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Finally, here's the PowerPoint file, in slide/note format for the presentation itself.  Note, this version does not include direct links to two of the scenario videos.  (The videos were produced for the purposes of internal training programs only at two courts and were used by special permission at the NACM conference.)  The PowerPoint file can be found at this link.

 

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The American Judicature Society, under a grant from the State Justice Institute, published "The Ethics Fieldbook: Tools for Trainers" in 1996.  Authors/editors were Cynthia Kelly Conlon and Lisa M. Milord, with assistance by Jeffrey M. Shaman.  The Fieldbook is no longer available from the AJS online bookstore and no longer published or available according to AJS.   Although it is just about 15 years old now, it is significantly out of date -- at least regarding the dozens or hundreds of ethics codes that have been adopted since its publication -- but it was and still may be a valuable resource on court ethics.  For the time it gave an excellent overview of the very short history of ethics codes for court employees.  The materials were originally published in a 3-ring binder over about 250 pages.  Here's a scan in pdf in 3 parts. 

Ethics Fieldbook 1996 1 of 3 Chap 1 to 8.pdf

Ethics Fieldbook 1996 2 of 3 Chap 9 to App D2.pdf

Ethics Fieldbook 1996 3 of 3 App D3 to end.pdf

We did contact AJS in 2007 to confirm that the publication was long out of print and no longer available, and that we could scan the binder.  However, if AJS, the State Justice Institute, the authors/editors, or anyone else wants to assert copyright on the publication, please let us know and we will remove the links immediately.

 

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In October 2008 Peter Kiefer and Karl Thoennes delivered a session on ethics for court employees attending the Fall Conference of the Oregon Association for Court Administration (OACA).  The session included three scenarios and two PowerPoint segments:

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Scenario 1 Betty's Sister.doc

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Scenario 2 Gifts Gifts Gifts.doc

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Scenario 3 A Future Up in Smoke.doc

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Ethics Presentation 9 23 08.ppt

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Ethics Rogues Gallery

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Rogues Gallery References.doc

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NACM Code Revision 2007

 

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In May 2008, Supreme Court staff in Malaysia asked about penalty or other consequence provisions in judicial conduct codes.  It was a very interesting question because while most codes describe required conduct and principles in great detail, they usually provide much less detail on penalties or consequences for violation.  Rebecca Lamprecht, a University of South Dakota intern with the 2nd Judicial Circuit in Sioux Falls, researched the 50 states in the US looking for penalty provisions in codes, statutes, or other documents and assembled the attached summary.  Our thanks to Rebecca for her excellent work.  Survey of Penalty Provisions, Codes of Judicial Conduct, USA 2008

 

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On September 11, 2007, Judge Glen Severson and Court Administrators Pat Garcia Duggan and Karl Thoennes delivered a presentation on JAIL for Judges to a group of Wyoming judges. The following materials may be helpful to conference participants:

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PowerPoint Presentation on Jail for Judges for Wyoming 

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Jail4Judges, JAIL Clones and Similar Efforts: An Update, William Raftery's August 2007 update on Jail for Judges in various states.

 

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JAIL for Judges: Court administrators Patricia Garcia Duggan and Karl Thoennes delivered a presentation on the proposed constitutional amendment in South Dakota in 2006 that would have stripped judges and others of personal legal immunity for official actions (among other things).  Presentation materials can be found at the links below, except for the 11-minute video published by "No on E" advocates; for a copy of that video (DVD on CD) please e-mail karl.thoennes@ujs.state.sd.us.

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PowerPoint Presentation on South Dakota's "Amendment E"  

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William Raftery's ABA Judges' Journal Article on JAIL

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 South Dakota Attorney General's Ballot Explanation

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Radio Advertisement by "No on E" Sponsors - mp3 audio file

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Jury Instructions drafted for use if "JAIL" had passed

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Justice O'Connor's Wall Street Journal Editorial, 2006

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South Dakota Legislative Resolution opposing the JAIL Amendment

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The full text of the JAIL Amendment as published by its advocates

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Guest Editorial, Argus Leader Newspaper, 2nd Circuit Presiding Judge

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Guest Editorial, Argus Leader Newspaper, South Dakota Attorney

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One of the Proponents' Election-Related Court Petitions on JAIL

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JAIL/sdfr5019_3975.ram - a link to the RealPlayer file of the South Dakota Public Television program on JAIL, fall 2006.

 

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Court managers Peter Kiefer, Pam Harris, David Slayton, and Karl Thoennes presented a proposed, draft revision to the Code of Ethics for the National Association for Court Management (NACM) at its conference in February 2007 in New York.  Copies of the draft code with commentary can be found at this link.  Copies of the PowerPoint presentation (still also in draft form) can be found at this link.

 

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Judge Timothy Baland and Karl Thoennes participated in a panel discussion and delivered a presentation on comparative judicial and court ethics codes at the World Ethics Forum in April 2006 in Oxford, England. Judge Baland's summary paper Measuring Judicial Ethics is available here in Microsoft Word format (.doc).  A copy of the PowerPoint presentation Comparative Judicial Ethics also available, although the file is about 9 MB so it will take some time to download.

 

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Peter Kiefer and Karl Thoennes conducted a session on ethics for court employees at the Court Clerk's conference in Richmond, Virginia on June 24, 2006.  The PowerPoint presentation  Court Ethics: Practical Applications of a Code of Conduct can be found here (3 MB).  The scenarios are also available: Outside employment, Gifts, Betty's Sister Scenario (Word format). 

 

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The Federal Judicial Center published a 24-page booklet in 2002 or judicial law clerks titled Maintaining the Public Trust: Ethics for Federal Judicial Law Clerks.  While the booklet is not geared toward administrative court staff, many of the principles and scenarios may still be helpful in ethics training.