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HIV-Discrimination Suit Waged with Help of Recent Grad Settled

September 24, 2012

The family of a teen who had been denied admission to the Milton Hershey School because of his AIDS status will receive $700,000 under the terms of a settlement agreement announced by the AIDS Law Project of Pennsylvania. 

The U.S. Department of Justice negotiated the agreement in response to a federal discrimination suit the AIDS Law Project filed against the school, which had denied admission to a 14-year-old boy because of his HIV status. 

In August, the Hershey School rescinded its policy of rejecting students diagnosed with HIV or AIDS. 

Recent law school graduate Matthew Mossman assisted with the suit, initially through the law school’s Civil Litigation Field Clinic, and later on a pro bono basis. 

"Among my responsibilities on the final stages of the Hershey case, I helped review case law and public settlements to determine a range of damages for similar types of cases." 

"I'm thankful that I was able to work on this case not only as a student, but also to see it through after graduation. My field clinic at the AIDS Law Project of Pennsylvania was invaluable in allowing me to be involved in a high-profile matter that resulted in justice to a client that otherwise couldn't have afforded 'high-profile' legal assistance. As a law student, I couldn't have imagined a more rewarding pro bono experience."

Mossman is currently pursuing a master’s degree in politics at the New School in New York City.