Blog of Rights

Seeking Justice through the U.N. Human Rights Committee

Seeking Justice through the U.N. Human Rights Committee

By Julie Ebenstein, Staff Attorney, Voting Rights Project, ACLU at 10:13am
When the U.N. Human Rights Committee reviews U.S. compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) this October, the review will tackle many of the human rights violations plaguing Florida. Last week the committee released its list of issues, which will form the basis for the U.S. review, and demanded answers to questions regarding U.S. laws and policies in areas such as juvenile solitary confinement, felon disfranchisement, and discriminatory enforcement of criminal law. These human rights violations severely impact the lives of Floridians, but often evade court challenges or other domestic mechanisms of review.
International Human Rights Body Seeking Answers on U.S. Civil and Political Rights Record

International Human Rights Body Seeking Answers on U.S. Civil and Political Rights Record

By Allison Frankel, Criminal Law Reform Project, ACLU at 4:16pm

An international human rights body is set to question the United States on its obligations under a key human rights treaty. The U.N. Human Rights Committee, an independent body of experts tasked with monitoring compliance with the International Covenant…

Needed in Immigration Overhaul: Counsel and Alternatives to Incarceration

Needed in Immigration Overhaul: Counsel and Alternatives to Incarceration

By Kimberly Humphrey, Washington Legislative Office at 12:13pm

Imagine that you are a lawful resident married to a U.S. citizen serviceman who is deployed overseas, and you are looking for a job to help support your family. You find one, but unbeknownst to you, your employer, aiming to expedite the hiring process,…

Shocking Video from Maine Prison Shows a Restrained Prisoner Being Tortured with Pepper Spray

Shocking Video from Maine Prison Shows a Restrained Prisoner Being Tortured with Pepper Spray

By Maggie Heim, Litigation Fellow, ACLU & Carl Takei, ACLU National Prison Project & Eric Balaban, ACLU National Prison Project at 11:24am

You're never going to win… Bottom line is the house wins every time.

That's what Maine Correctional Center Captain Shawn Welch said to a prisoner who was strapped into a restraint chair, his face coated with pepper spray and his legs…

New Pope Washes the Feet of 12 Kids in Prison: An Easter Reminder for the U.S.

New Pope Washes the Feet of 12 Kids in Prison: An Easter Reminder for the U.S.

By Ajmel Quereshi, Staff Counsel, ACLU at 10:34am

Last week, while Christians around the world were preparing to celebrate Easter, the newly elected Pope Francis visited Casal Del Marmo...

VICTORY! Students Triumph over Private Prison Company’s Bid to Name College Football Stadium

VICTORY! Students Triumph over Private Prison Company’s Bid to Name College Football Stadium

By Carl Takei, ACLU National Prison Project at 11:33am

For-profit prison company GEO Group announced its decision last night to withdraw the $6 million...

No Mother Should Share My Anguish: Join Me in Asking for a Ban on Youth Solitary for Those in Federal Care

No Mother Should Share My Anguish: Join Me in Asking for a Ban on Youth Solitary for Those in Federal Care

By Vicky Gunderson, Activist at 1:47pm

As a mother, not being able to hug and comfort my son when he was alone in a concrete box is like the worst form of hell.

Knowing our son Kirk ended his own life while being held in solitary confinement, after he requested to not be left alone……

Ted Koppel Takes on the Widespread Solitary Confinement of Kids; Our Plea for Change

Ted Koppel Takes on the Widespread Solitary Confinement of Kids; Our Plea for Change

By Ian Kysel, Aryeh Neier Fellow, ACLU Human Rights Program at 11:22am

Ted Koppel is a legendary newsman, and, face-to-face, a formidable interviewer. A few weeks ago, in a warehouse in Brooklyn...

New York Subjects Prisoners to Solitary as a Disciplinary Tool of First Resort

New York Subjects Prisoners to Solitary as a Disciplinary Tool of First Resort

By Elena Landriscina, Legal Fellow, NYCLU at 1:52pm

On any given day in New York State, approximately 4,500 people are confined for 22 to 24 hours a day in solitary confinement...