Blog of Rights

Ed
Yohnka
Another State Acts to Protect Facebook Passwords From Employers

Another State Acts to Protect Facebook Passwords From Employers

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 1:24pm
Earlier this week, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law a bill that prohibits employers from requiring or requesting that employees or applicants reveal the username sand passwords for personal accounts on websites such as Facebook and Twitter. Governor Quinn, in signing the bill, said it was necessary to “protect workers and their right to personal privacy.” Illinois in is now the second state to enact this type legislation, following the lead of Maryland, which enacted a similar law in May.

A "Near-Death Experience" for Death Penalty Abolition in Illinois

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 11:36am

On Thursday afternoon, the Illinois House of Representatives was a raucous place — with talk of a deal on a tax increase, Medicaid reform and proposed budget cuts all sweeping around the chamber, members created a cacophony of sound that…

Act Now! Push Death Penalty Repeal in Illinois Past the Finish Line

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 11:27am

Randy Steidl is one of 20 men who've been exonerated and released from Illinois' death row in recent years. Last Tuesday, he and I sat just a few feet apart when the Illinois Senate passed Senate Bill 3539 — repealing the state's irretrievably…

It's About Love: Same Sex Couples in Illinois Seek the Freedom to Marry

It's About Love: Same Sex Couples in Illinois Seek the Freedom to Marry

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 11:22am

I just want to be married to the person that I love.

That is what Tanya Lazaro, a 13-year veteran (and Detective) in the Chicago Police Department told the Chicago Sun Times as part of an interview for a story in this morning’s paper…

Closing Tamms Supermax: A Chance To Reevaluate Solitary Confinement

Closing Tamms Supermax: A Chance To Reevaluate Solitary Confinement

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 5:43pm

This is a good week in Illinois. Yesterday, Gov. Pat Quinn announced that he would close the “supermax” facility at Tamms Correctional Facility, where prisoners are held in long-term solitary confinement.

Victory! Illinois Governor Signs Bill to End Death Penalty

Victory! Illinois Governor Signs Bill to End Death Penalty

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 1:32pm

It happened. Early this afternoon, at his office in Springfield, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law Senate Bill 3539, ending Illinois' dysfunctional and broken death penalty system. The measure ends an embarrassing history in Illinois, during which 20 men sentenced to death have been exonerated and released from the state's death row.

Anti-Profiling Measure Extended in Illinois

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 5:17pm

With little fanfare — and nearly no media attention — Illinois Governor Pat Quinn recently signed legislation that extends the collection of data by police of every motorist they stop. The measure was first adopted a few years ago…

In Memory of First Amendment Champion Judith Krug

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 12:07pm

Those of us in Chicago — and across the nation — who share a fierce commitment to protecting freedom of expression lost a great champion this past weekend with the passing of Judith Krug. A librarian by training, Judith became a champion…

Illinois Death Penalty Repeal Awaits Gov. Quinn's Signature

By Ed Yohnka, ACLU of Illinois at 11:39am

On Tuesday, January 11, the Illinois Senate acted to address a national embarrassment for the state — our failed death penalty system. By a vote of 32 to 25, the Senate passed Senate Bill 3539, which repeals the death penalty in Illinois.…

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