Blog of Rights

Rachel
Myers

Rachel Myers is a senior communications strategist at the ACLU focusing on criminal justice issues. She worked previously at the ACLU of Maine and the Portland (ME) Education Partnership, where she trained teachers, students and community organizations to use service learning in the public schools. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin.

Trading Privacy for Benefits

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 12:38pm
The New York Times has this story about the dramatic increase in the number of states considering legislation that would mandate drug testing for poor people who rely on public assistance. The ACLU of Florida filed a lawsuit in September challenging Florida’s law — one of the most egregious we’ve seen — requiring applicants for cash assistance to submit to a drug test, at their own cost, in order to qualify for benefits. As we’ve said before, laws like Florida’s are costly, ineffective and unconstitutional.

Death By Missed Deadline

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 11:29am

Yesterday the Supreme Court heard the appeal of Cory Maples, a man facing death in Alabama because his lawyers were late filing the appeal of his conviction in state court. This excellent New York Times editorial describes how the sad emphasis on…

California Can Reform Solitary Confinement

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 11:26am

California's overuse of solitary confinement is inhumane, costly and jeopardizes public safety by ignoring the fact that normal human contact is essential for ensuring successful re-entry and reducing recidivism rates.

Now, following a weeks-long…

"Solitary Confinement Should be a Last Resort"

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 12:39pm

That is the title of this excellent editorial in the Washington Post, which takes on the issue of solitary confinement recently brought into the national spotlight by the hunger striking prisoners in California's Pelican Bay State Prison and other…

Louisiana: Act TODAY For Sensible Prison Reform!

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 4:06pm

Tomorrow, the Louisiana House will vote on House Bill 138, which would give individuals age 60 or older the right to a hearing before a parole board. The board could then determine whether these individuals can be safely released. In a state that…

Plata Decision: Good for the Constitution, Communities and Taxpayer Wallets

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 4:36pm

Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court ordered the state of California to reduce its prison population in order to alleviate extreme overcrowding that endangers the health and safety of the state's prisoners and prison staff. The decision in…

ACLU Lens: Supreme Court Orders California to Reduce its Prison Population to Alleviate Overcrowding

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 1:47pm

The U.S. Supreme Court today ordered the state of California to reduce its prison population in order to alleviate extreme overcrowding that endangers the health and safety of the state’s prisoners and prison staff. The decision in Brown v.…

ACLU Video: "No-Fly With Me"

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 2:41pm

Ayman Latif is a disabled U.S. Marine veteran living in Egypt with his wife and two young children. Adama Bah is a 22-year-old caregiver living in New York with asylum status that protects her from the persecution she would face if she returned…

ACLU Scholarship Winner Takes On Texas Textbook Takeover

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 11:00am

Yesterday, we posted about the Texas Textbook Takeover and what you can do to stop it. We hope you'll join us in taking action, and we wanted to tell you about a former ACLU scholarship winner who's also getting involved!

Matthew LaClair…

With Technology Like This, Who Needs the Law?

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 12:55pm

(Originally posted on Daily Kos.)

The ACLU and Electronic Frontier Foundation have received several batches of Justice Department documents in response to our Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request (and subsequent lawsuit) for records…

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