This week, the ACLU of Pennsylvania sent Pennsylvania's Attorney General a letter asking her to enforce the 2010 Healthy Birth for Incarcerated Women Act. The 2010 bill (SB 1074) bans the use of handcuffs, leg shackles, and other physical restraints on pregnant incarcerated individuals who are in the second and third trimesters of their pregnancies.
Last Saturday we marked the anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark civil rights case that ruled state-sanctioned public school segregation is unconstitutional. In a friend-of-the-court brief in that case, the ACLU and partnering organizations argued that “segregation and equality cannot co-exist.
Each year the ACLU of Maine teaches over 100 workshops to students, which gives us plenty of chances to cite both new and old decisions by the Supreme Court. Hypotheticals can be fun, but students routinely tell us that they enjoy hearing about real cases - and why wouldn’t they? Disputes that make it to the Supreme Court are often fascinating, and the big cases involving students tend to be particularly juicy and ripe for debate.
Student attorneys at the Cumberland Legal Aid Clinic and the Refugee and Human Rights Program at the Maine Law School recently published a guide for immigrant victims of domestic violence. While the guide should not be used as a substitute for legal advice, it does provide invaluable information for individuals whose fear of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) may keep them from contacting authorities. The guide is comprehensive.
Today, the Washington Post published an article title Ex-Cons But Still Barred, looking at the city of Chicago’s reconsideration of restrictions on people with criminal records living in public housing.
I meet with Ruth Lockhart at Bard Coffee to discuss her work in partnership with the ACLU of Maine, and to attempt to (impossibly) capture her lifelong commitment to reproductive rights in a single blog post.
Each Friday, we’ll bring you updates on the latest civil liberties news from Maine and the nation.
Prayer Allowed at New York Town’s Public Meetings
On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Greece, N.Y., a town that begins its public board meetings with a prayer. The majority concluded that prayers that open town meetings do not violate the Constitution.
On Monday, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Rep. Nita Lowey (NY-17) reintroduced the Peace Corps Equity Act in the Senate and the House. The late Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) originally introduced the bill in April 2013.