Blog of Rights

Dena
Sher

Dena is legislative counsel at the ACLU Washington Legislative Office. Sher joined the ACLU in 2011, after four years as the the state legislative counsel with Americans United for Separation of Church and State. She worked with legislators, activists, and coalition partners on legislation, policy, and ballot initiatives that affected religious liberties, including school vouchers, healthcare refusals and religion in the workplace. She was also an Equal Justice Works fellow at Americans United. Her Equal Justice Works project investigated how programs funded under President Bush’s Faith-Based Initiative were implemented. Sher also worked on many of the cases litigated by AU during her fellowship.

Sher is a graduate of George Washington University Law School and Georgetown University.

 

Since When Is the First Amendment an Afterthought?

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:03pm
The Denver Post reported that Joshua DuBois, the head of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, made this alarming statement, at a recent event in Denver. These "finer points" are not a nuisance or an afterthought. They are critical to how government-funded social services are delivered. For instance, they are what ensure that you wouldn't be turned away from a homeless shelter because you are not Christian. They are what ensure that you wouldn't be forced to attend a worship service prior to getting a meal at a soup kitchen or taking part in ajob training program. These "finer points" protect people in need — and are required by the Constitution.
A Hearing on a Hearing: Rep. Peter King Prioritizes Navel Gazing

A Hearing on a Hearing: Rep. Peter King Prioritizes Navel Gazing

By Devon Chaffee, Legislative Policy Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:12pm

Yesterday Peter King (R-NY), Chair of the House Homeland Security Committee, brought congressional navel gazing to a new level by holding a hearing on his past hearings that have singled out and perpetuated dangerous stereotypes about the American…

Wanted: Women on Birth Control, Not Men on Ham Sandwiches

Wanted: Women on Birth Control, Not Men on Ham Sandwiches

By Sarah Lipton-Lubet, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 6:17pm

Yesterday's House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform hearing on the new HHS rule that requires insurance plans to include birth control with no co-pay (except for those held by churches or religiously affiliated nonprofits like universities)…

Helping Trafficking Victims Isn’t Biased

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 9:44pm

Earlier this week, Michael Gerson, an op-ed writer for The Washington Post, penned a particularly troubling piece, accusing the Obama administration—and the ACLU—of anti-Catholic bias, because “the conscience protections of Catholics…

Waiting for the End of Taxpayer-Funded Hiring Discrimination

By Dena Sher, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:11pm

On July 1, 2008, on the campaign trail in Zanesville, Ohio, then-candidate Barack Obama promised to end hiring discrimination based on religion by organizations — such as the Salvation Army and World Vision — that receive government…

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