CHICAGO, IL - October 3, 2013 - The International Trademark Association (INTA) is proud to announce that it has renewed its partnership with Street Law, Inc. and Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF), and will continue to collaborate on the Unreal Campaign through 2014. Unreal is INTA’s consumer awareness program that aims to educate teenagers about trademark law and enforcement as well as risks of counterfeit products. In a kick-off event yesterday morning, INTA, with support from Street Law and CRF, brought its anticounterfeiting message to 100 local Chicago students from Wheaton North High School, the Law and Public Safety Academy at Hirsch High School and the Legal Prep Charter Academies High School.
During the course of 2012, INTA volunteers worked closely with Street Law and CRF to develop trademark-related educational materials. Street Law and CRF drew on its network of schools across the U.S. to match INTA volunteers with high school teachers to implement the lesson plan. Launched in 2012, the Unreal Campaign Student Outreach Program has already reached approximately 775 students across the country. INTA, Street Law and CRF will focus its matching program on four key cities, namely Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, and Washington, D.C., with efforts to extend the matching program to other cities on a case-by-case basis.
In addition to bringing INTA volunteers into schools, over the coming months, INTA, Street Law and CRF will also provide teachers and members and training and technical support. The Chicago event is also the first of a series of student engagement sessions that these organizations will organize through 2014. In November, while INTA is in Miami for its Leadership Meeting, it will again host teens from local high schools in a student engagement session. As in Chicago, the event will include presentations from INTA members and law enforcement officials, and an interactive activity where students can immediately apply the knowledge gained during the presentations.
The sale of counterfeit goods poses a significant risk to consumers and the U.S. economy. In 2012 alone, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and its agencies, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), conducted a total of 22,848 seizures with a retail value over $1.2 billion. These included harmful, and potentially deadly, items such as counterfeit airbags discovered by CBP and ICE in 65 separate shipments at US ports, and counterfeit contact lenses found in 99 shipments. Consumers are largely ignorant to the scope and danger of the counterfeit goods, or what they can do protect themselves and help tackle this problem.
“The Unreal Campaign provides INTA with an opportunity to educate teens about trademarks as an important form of intellectual property and expose them to potential careers in trademark law or enforcement,” said INTA CEO Etienne Sanz de Acedo, “Our partnership with Street Law and CRF also enables us to fulfill an important goal of the campaign: to empower teens to make educated purchasing decisions and help them appreciate the risks of counterfeit goods to themselves, their communities and the national economy. INTA pleased to continuing this important work with these two great organizations.”
“Street Law is extremely pleased with all that was accomplished during the first year of our partnership with INTA and CRF, and we look forward to deepening this impact by continuing our work together,” reports Lee Arbetman, Executive Director of Street Law. “The Unreal Campaign shines an important light on public policy issues related to trademarks and consumer protection issues and makes them relevant to young people through a high-quality, practical curriculum that is delivered by INTA members using interactive teaching strategies.”
"Constitutional Rights Foundation is thrilled with the previous success of the Unreal Campaign and looks forward to continuing our partnership with Street Law and INTA to assure that students are educated about intellectual property laws and policies, learn how they apply to their daily lives, and are protected as consumers and creators,” said CRF President Marshall Croddy, “The Unreal Campaign is a great example of how engaging materials and volunteer experts in the classroom can help students gain indispensible knowledge that is imperative for today’s generation of citizens."
Founded in 1878, the International Trademark Association (INTA) is a global association of trademark owners and professionals dedicated to supporting trademarks and related intellectual property in order to protect consumers and to promote fair and effective commerce. Members include more than 6,300 trademark owners, professionals and academics from more than 190 countries, who benefit from the Association’s global trademark research, policy development, education and training, and international network. Headquartered in New York City, INTA also has offices in Shanghai, Brussels and Washington, D.C., and representatives in Geneva and Mumbai.
About the Unreal Campaign
The Unreal Campaign is INTA’s consumer awareness program that aims to educate high school students about the dangers of counterfeiting and importance of trademarks. Launched in May 2012, Unreal is a multi-year initiative that will outreach to teens through online activities and direct school engagement. More information can be found on www.inta.org/unrealcampaign
or through www.unrealcampaign.com
About Street Law, Inc.
Street Law, Inc., based in Washington D.C., is a 40-year-old nonprofit organization that creates classroom and community programs that teach people about law, democracy, and human rights worldwide. Street Law’s accessible, interactive programs empower students and communities to become active, legally-astute contributors to society. These programs are practical, relevant, and participatory—combining legal content with innovative teaching strategies that engage young people in the learning process. As a result, Street Law participants benefit from “real life” lessons and insights, which they can use to effect positive change in their lives.
About the Constitutional Rights Foundation
CRF seeks to instill in our nation's youth a deeper understanding of citizenship through values expressed in our Constitution and its Bill of Rights and to educate young people to become active and responsible participants in our society. CRF, celebrating over 50 years of service, is a non-profit, non-partisan, national organization dedicated to educating America's young people about the importance of civic participation in a democratic society. CRF, based in Los Angeles, develops, produces, and distributes programs and materials to teachers, students, and public-minded citizens all across the nation.