Legal Reasoning, Research, and Writing, Legal Writing II
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After graduating from Brooklyn Law School, Peter Blum clerked for United States District Judge William G. Bassler in Newark, NJ. He then worked as a staff attorney for The Legal Aid Society, which is the primary public defender in New York City. Most of his time at Legal Aid was with the Criminal Appeals Bureau, where he represented state prisoners who were appealing and collaterally attacking serious felony convictions. Professor Blum argued frequently before the Appellate Divisions for the First and Second Departments, which cover New York City. He also argued before the New York Court of Appeals, and sought habeas corpus relief in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He finished his Legal Aid career with a short stint in the Criminal Defense Division, where he represented misdemeanor clients in Brooklyn Criminal Court.
Professor Blum was elected to the Executive Board of UAW Local 2325, the union which represented Legal Aid’s 700 staff attorneys. His duties included typical union fare: chairing meetings; prosecuting grievances; serving as a shop steward for the Criminal Appeals Bureau; negotiating and enforcing the collective bargaining agreement; and leafleting, phone-banking, and poll-watching in support of UAW-endorsed political candidates. In addition, Professor Blum and his union colleagues could often be found lobbying, demonstrating, and picketing in support of labor rights, equal justice, and civil liberties. Two weeks after September 11, 2001 (during which the Criminal Appeals Bureau lost its office), Professor Blum was one of the founding members of New York City Labor Against the War, which spawned a national labor anti-war movement.
Professor Blum has taught at Howard since August 2004.