Blog of Rights

Monica Jones at a press conference

Arrested for Walking While Trans: An Interview with Monica Jones

By Chase Strangio, Staff Attorney, ACLU at 11:19am
In Phoenix, Arizona, you can be arrested for repeatedly stopping and engaging a passerby in conversation. This may, under Phoenix law, be evidence that you are "manifesting" an intent to engage in prostitution. Of course, this could also be evidence that you are lost or canvassing for a political group or simply talking about the weather. The difference between "innocent" and "criminal" behavior often comes down to how a person looks. Transgender women of color are often profiled by police as engaging in sex work for simply being outside and going about their daily routines. Amnesty International documented this disproportionate targeting by police of transgender women as sex workers in a 2005 report. "[S]ubjective and prejudiced perceptions of transgender women as sex workers often play a significant role in officers' decisions to stop and arrest transgender women," the report concluded. One woman told Amnesty, "'No tenemos el derecho a vivir.' (We don't have the right to live.)."
Biohazard sign

Treat Ebola as a Public Health Issue, Not a National Security Matter

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 1:09pm

Since the government announced the introduction of new Ebola screening measures at border checkpoints at five U.S. airports, we’ve been getting queries asking what our position is on such measures from a civil liberties standpoint.

This is…

Jetliner landing

Ebola: Travel Bans, Quarantines, and Political Courage

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 11:05am

The political reaction to Ebola has been a study in contrasts. On the one hand, we see some leaders insecurely trying to prove their “Ebola-fighting bona fides” by racing to go beyond what public health experts recommend. Some are actually fanning…

Photo of New Orleans skyline

Louisiana Blocks Ebola Scientists From Meeting in New Orleans in Latest Counterproductive Over-Reaction

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 10:30am

The state of Louisiana has informed the organizers of a scientific conference that Ebola researchers who have recently returned from West Africa would not be permitted to travel to New Orleans for the conference—and would be quarantined if they showed…

When Stigma Trumps Science in Blood Donations

When Stigma Trumps Science in Blood Donations

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 11:37am

If you believe that two men in a committed, monogamous relationship – where neither partner is living with HIV – face the same risks as an individual who has heterosexual sex with a commercial sex worker or someone who they know is living with…