Blog of Rights

Rachel
Bloom
Rachel Bloom is an Advocacy and Policy Strategist for the American Civil Liberties Union. Her work focuses on state based criminal justice reform, with particular attention paid to drug testing of public benefit recipients, collateral consequences, private prisons and policing. Focusing on these issues, she works with ACLU affiliates throughout the country, as well as with national partners, to advance progressive reform and defeat regressive legislation. Ms. Bloom is a proud alumnae of Barnard College and received her Masters degree in Social Policy and Planning from the London School of Economics.
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Poor People Have Rights Too

Poor People Have Rights Too

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 4:05pm

Drug-testing those applying for public assistance is unconstitutional, shortsighted and will end up costing states more than any possible savings.

Being Poor Is Not a Crime

Being Poor Is Not a Crime

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 1:25pm

June 2011 marks the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon's declaration of a "war on drugs" — a war that has cost roughly a trillion dollars, has produced little to no effect on the supply of or demand for drugs in the United…

Florida Law Punishes Poor People for Being Poor

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 2:05pm

During this legislative session, more than two dozen states have introduced legislation to drug test individuals receiving or applying for various forms of public assistance. And by public assistance I mean individuals applying for Temporary Assistance…

Drug-Testing Welfare Recipients: A Trend with No Traction

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 4:26pm

Two months into the state legislative session, not a single welfare drug testing bill has passed into law.

Told You So: Florida's New Drug Testing Policy Already Costing Taxpayers More

Told You So: Florida's New Drug Testing Policy Already Costing Taxpayers More

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 5:57pm

We've told you a few times about Florida's horrible new law that drug tests all families applying for cash benefit welfare applicants. The law, which went into effect July 1, makes applicants front the cost of the drug test and reimburses individuals…

The Daily Show Tells Florida Legislators: "I Think I’m Gonna Need You to Pee into This Cup"

The Daily Show Tells Florida Legislators: "I Think I’m Gonna Need You to Pee into This Cup"

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 12:09pm

Last night the Daily Show featured ACLU client Luis Lebron, a Navy veteran who refused to take the drug test required by the State of Florida for welfare applicants.

Prison as Punishment, Not for Punishment

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 3:43pm

No one wants to go to prison, but there's one particular prison in Idaho that's especially feared. Why? According to the Associated Press, over the past two years, more prisoner-on-prisoner assaults have occurred at this specific prison —…

Is CCA Trying to Take Over the World?

Is CCA Trying to Take Over the World?

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 5:29pm

The Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) sent a letter to 48 state governors offering to buy up their state-owned and operated prisons and put them under CCA control.

Pass a Drug Test Before You Can Pass a Class

Pass a Drug Test Before You Can Pass a Class

By Rachel Bloom, ACLU at 5:05pm

This week, a college in Missouri broke the law and violated the Fourth Amendment rights of its students. Linn State Technical College became the first public institution of higher learning to implement mandatory drug testing of all new students,…

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