Blog of Rights

Photo of a police traffic stop

Police Officer Discretion in the Use of Body Worn Cameras

By Jay Stanley, Senior Policy Analyst, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 12:30pm
In our October 2013 policy white paper on police body cameras, we struggled with how to ensure that the cameras would serve as an effective oversight mechanism for police while not unduly invading privacy. We pointed out that purely from an oversight standpoint, putting aside all other considerations, the ideal policy would be for officers’ cameras to run throughout their entire shift, which would guarantee that an officer could not evade detection while engaging in abuse. But as we discussed, it’s not possible to put aside all other considerations, including the privacy of the public and of officers.
For Some Families Fleeing Violence, a Shot at a Fair Shake

For Some Families Fleeing Violence, a Shot at a Fair Shake

By Daniel Galindo at 4:56pm

When I met Milagro* and her two toddlers just a few months ago, they were locked up in a makeshift federal detention facility in the desert of Artesia, New Mexico, awaiting imminent deportation to Honduras – a near certain death sentence in light…

This Bill Is Mandating Perfect Border Security, Using Your Tax Dollars, Without a Plan.

This Bill Is Mandating Perfect Border Security, Using Your Tax Dollars, Without a Plan.

By Chris Rickerd, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 9:55am

Michael McCaul, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, last year proposed a logical approach to border security: In rejecting measures to put the "cart" of border spending before the "horse" of measuring what resources are needed, he introduced…

Detained for the Holidays

Detained for the Holidays

By Michael Tan, Staff Attorney, Immigrants' Rights Project, ACLU at 10:44am

This fall, Zadia* and her son Jose* came to the United States to escape years of physical abuse by her common-law husband. With the help of members of their church, Zadia and Jose fled Honduras. But rather than find refuge, they have been locked up…

Stepping Out of the Shadows

Stepping Out of the Shadows

By Deisy Hernandez, Outreach Coordinator, ACLU of Nevada at 9:35am

My mother, Estela, and I arrived in the United States in 1988. I was two years old as she carried me in her arms across the Mexico-U.S. border. I was too young to understand what was happening, but my mom has told me many times why we left.

Before…

President Obama: Don’t Empower an Unaccountable and Violent Agency

President Obama: Don’t Empower an Unaccountable and Violent Agency

By Vicki B. Gaubeca, ACLU of New Mexico at 4:54pm

Which American police force had an officer arrested for misconduct almost every single day between 2005 and 2012?

Hint: It’s the same one that was responsible for at least 31 fatal encounters with private individuals since 2010, without a…

Victory! New Legal Representation for Those Lost in Detention

Victory! New Legal Representation for Those Lost in Detention

By Carmen Iguina, Equal Justice Works Fellow, ACLU of Southern California at 4:05pm

Mario* had a long history of mental illness prior to landing in immigration custody. He struggled with schizophrenia and had attempted suicide in the past.

Despite this, none of the various immigration officials who came into contact with him…

Federal Appeals Court Tells Obama Administration to Stop Imprisoning Immigrants for No Reason

Federal Appeals Court Tells Obama Administration to Stop Imprisoning Immigrants for No Reason

By Eunice Lee, Detention Attorney, ACLU, Immigrants' Rights Project at 1:37pm

A federal appeals court sent a clear message to the Obama administration this week: stop locking away immigrants without bond based on old criminal convictions.

The court on Tuesday held that the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)…

Armed Guards at Every Home: The View from El Salvador

Armed Guards at Every Home: The View from El Salvador

By Rachel Nusbaum, Media Strategist, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:03pm

The story always starts the same way: unaccompanied kids, and sometimes whole families, fleeing terrible violence in Central America.

It must be terrible indeed, because the journey north is a perilous one. Yet parents and kids continue to…

Whistleblower Says CBP Has Culture of Impunity and Violence

Whistleblower Says CBP Has Culture of Impunity and Violence

By Chris Rickerd, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:44pm

Yesterday the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) published what it described as "the most scathing public criticism ever lodged against Customs and Border Protection from a high-ranking official at the nation's largest law enforcement agency."

James…