Blog of Rights

Will
Matthews

Will Matthews is the senior communications officer at the ACLU of Northern California, where he leads the strategic communications component of a statewide ACLU campaign to reform California’s criminal justice system. Previously he was the senior media relations associate at the ACLU’s national office in New York, where he primarily worked on the ACLU’s campaign to reduce over-incarceration. A graduate of Chapman University in Orange, Calif, and the recipient of the Master of Divinity degree from Vanderbilt University, Matthews formerly was an award-winning investigative reporter for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

The ACLU and Religion: Don't Believe Everything You Read On the Internet

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 2:59pm
A malicious and factually inaccurate e-mail accusing the ACLU of not standing solidly on the side of religious liberty – an e-mail that was first circulated six years ago – has once again reared its ugly head and popped up in the e-mail inboxes of people across the country. In an effort to set the record straight, below are two myths the e-mail passes off as truth, followed by the facts which effectively debunk the e-mail’s claims.
Lt Gov. Gavin Newsom

CA Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom "Steps Up" for Marijuana Legalization

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 12:34pm

If you missed the rousing speech delivered by California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom over the weekend at the state’s Democratic Party convention in Los Angeles, do yourself a favor and take 10 minutes to give it a watch.

Death by Firing Squad Highlights Inhumanity of Death Penalty

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 4:46pm

When Ronnie Lee Gardner is strapped into a chair early on Friday morning, and a hood is placed over his head and a small white target is pinned over his heart, the citizens of Utah — and indeed the entire country — will be reminded in…

ACLU Lens: Abuse in the Los Angeles County Jails

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 10:41am

A new report released today by the ACLU reveals shocking details of a climate of violence inside the nation's largest jail system. 

Judge Temporarily Halts College's Unlawful Drug Testing Program

Judge Temporarily Halts College's Unlawful Drug Testing Program

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 11:10am

Taking swift action, a federal district court judge last night granted an ACLU request and temporarily halted an unconstitutional policy at a public college in Missouri requiring all incoming students to submit to mandatory drug tests. Judge Nanette…

The Incomplete Story Told by California’s Declining Juvenile Arrest Rates

The Incomplete Story Told by California’s Declining Juvenile Arrest Rates

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California & Rebecca McCray, ACLU Criminal Law Reform Project at 2:20pm

A recent study from the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice (CJCJ) demonstrates that decriminalization of marijuana can actually improve our children’s futures while saving taxpayers billions of dollars.

In 2011, Senate Bill 1449…

ACLU Lens: Rachel Maddow Highlights ACLU Report on Abuse in Los Angeles Jails

ACLU Lens: Rachel Maddow Highlights ACLU Report on Abuse in Los Angeles Jails

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 1:05pm

An ACLU report documents dozens of stories of brutal violence carried out by sheriff’s deputies against inmates at the Los Angeles County Jail.

Bad Hair Day?

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 4:21pm

"A.A." is a 5-year-old kindergartner in Needville, Texas. Last Friday, a Texas judge ordered A.A. back to school after weeks of being denied that opportunity.

The trouble all started on his first day of school last month, when…

New York Times Highlights Urgent Need to Protect Immigration Detainees from Sexual Abuse

New York Times Highlights Urgent Need to Protect Immigration Detainees from Sexual Abuse

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 2:57pm

It is critical the Obama administration ensures that the bipartisan Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) applies to immigration detention facilities.

ACLU Lens: North Carolina Repeals Historic Legislation Combating Racism in Death Penalty

By Will Matthews, ACLU of Northern California at 2:45pm

The North Carolina state Senate late Monday voted to repeal an historic 2009 law that would have helped ensure that death sentences handed down in the state were not the result of racial bias.

The Racial Justice Act allows death row prisoners…

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