Blog of Rights

What a Week! Three Appeals Courts Across the Nation Condemn Anti-immigrant Laws

What a Week! Three Appeals Courts Across the Nation Condemn Anti-immigrant Laws

By Omar Jadwat, Immigrants' Rights Project at 12:34pm
Three federal appeals courts decisions this week have added to what was already a lopsided score in favor of fairness and common sense, and against the snake-oil salesmen who managed to convince a few states and localities to enact laws discriminating against individuals based on their perceived immigration status.
Victory! The University of Michigan Grants In-State Tuition to DREAMers

Victory! The University of Michigan Grants In-State Tuition to DREAMers

By Javier Contreras, DREAMer at 11:39am

Yesterday, we Dreamers won a huge victory for equality in Michigan. The Regents of the University of Michigan voted 6-2 to grant in-state tuition to all Michigan students who meet certain basic educational requirements, regardless of their immigration…

What Does Sheriff Arpaio Have To Do with Immigration Reform?

What Does Sheriff Arpaio Have To Do with Immigration Reform?

By Cecillia Wang, ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project at 1:11pm

Last month, a U.S. District Court in Phoenix issued a 142-page decision against Sheriff Joe Arpaio and the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) in Ortega Melendres v. Arpaio.  After  a three-week trial, the court found that MCSO had…

CBP Using Its Authorization for Border Use Of Drones as Wedge For Nationwide Use

CBP Using Its Authorization for Border Use Of Drones as Wedge For Nationwide Use

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 1:51pm

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has released a very valuable set of documents it obtained via FOIA from Customs & Border Protection (CBP) on that agency’s use of drones. EFF found that CPB has greatly increased the number of missions that it has flown—inside the border region—on behalf of other state, local and federal agencies. The EFF’s Jennifer Lynch summarizes what they found nicely in this blog post.

All the public discussion around the CBP’s use of drones has centered around their use on the border. As far as I know, CBP’s drone program was intended and authorized by Congress for the purpose of patrolling the nation’s borders. It was not intended to be a general law enforcement drone “lending library,” in which Predator drones (which are quite unlike the small UAVs that police departments around the country are beginning to acquire and deploy) are used for all manner of purposes across the country. Many of those purposes are totally unobjectionable, but if such a system is to be created, it should be only following a full, open, and democratic discussion, and (as Lynch points out) with a strong set of privacy policies. It should certainly not be created in secret by a single federal agency.

Is E-Verify Effective? Depends on How You Look at It

Is E-Verify Effective? Depends on How You Look at It

By Chris Calabrese, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:35pm

Yesterday the New York Times wrote about E-Verify, the system of employment verification tucked into the immigration legislation that passed the Senate later in the afternoon. As the Times notes, E-Verify is "a linchpin of the legislation… [that]…

DOMA's Defeat a Clear Victory for Same-Sex Binational Couples

DOMA's Defeat a Clear Victory for Same-Sex Binational Couples

By Ian S. Thompson, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:29pm

As pissed-off and heartbroken as advocates for LGBT rights were over the failure to include same-sex binational couples in the Senate immigration bill last month, Wednesday's defeat of the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act" at the Supreme Court was…

Our Stance on the Immigration Reform Bill: Support for Many Civil Liberties Provisions and Opposition to New Border Measures

Our Stance on the Immigration Reform Bill: Support for Many Civil Liberties Provisions and Opposition to New Border Measures

By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 5:22pm

As anyone who’s been following news reports on the immigration reform bill now knows, a major agreement on the bill has been reached in the U.S. Senate, and its border enforcement provisions have changed dramatically.

You might be wondering…

Is the Senate's Border Enforcement Capitulation Based on Sham Numbers?

Is the Senate's Border Enforcement Capitulation Based on Sham Numbers?

By Chris Rickerd, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:42pm

This week, Republican senators used a Congressional Budget Office report to bolster their case for more border resources. The principal negotiators of a proposal to put 20,000 more Border Patrol agents in the Southwest, along with billions of dollars…

For Many DACA Students, Access to Higher Education Remains A Challenge

For Many DACA Students, Access to Higher Education Remains A Challenge

By Needa Virani, Activist at 3:56pm

A Georgia student's story highlights the need for immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship for the 11 million people who have become part of the American fabric, and aspire to become citizens, but currently have no way to attain legal…

Study of Migrants Shows Abuse on Both Sides of U.S.-Mexico Border

Study of Migrants Shows Abuse on Both Sides of U.S.-Mexico Border

By Vicki B. Gaubeca, ACLU of New Mexico at 1:36pm

On Thursday, the ACLU of New Mexico Regional Center for Border Rights will join the Programa de Defensa e Incidencia Binacional (Bi-national Defense and Advocacy Program, PBID), a delegation of Mexican non-governmental organizations, as they travel…