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Lewis Bollard ’13 Wins Hogan/Smoger Access to Justice Prize for Essay on Ag-Gag Laws

Yale Law School student Lewis Bollard ’13 has won the 2012 Hogan/Smoger Access to Justice Essay Contest. The contest, sponsored by the national public interest law firm Public Justice, offers law students the opportunity to investigate and offer solutions to injustices inflicted on the environment. Bollard’s essay is titled “Ag-Gag: The Unconstitutionality of Laws Restricting Undercover Investigations on Farms.”

“In March 2012,” writes Bollard, “Iowa and Utah passed ‘Ag-Gag’ laws in response to a series of high profile undercover investigations of farms by animal activists. The laws aimed to stop those investigations. This is a paper about Ag-Gag laws: their origins, their purpose, and their constitutionality. I argue that Ag-Gag laws should be subject to heightened First Amendment scrutiny under the newsgathering framework of Cohen v. Cowles Media Co. And I argue that the laws cannot survive such scrutiny.”

For writing the winning essay, Bollard wins $5,000 and recognition in the Public Justice newsletter. His winning essay is viewable here.