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News & Press Releases

Sep
21
2016
Lawsuit: Syracuse Jail is Harming Children with Abusive Solitary Confinement Conditions

The New York Civil Liberties Union and Legal Services of Central New York filed a lawsuit in district court today against the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office for locking up children ages 16 and 17, many of whom are mentally ill, in near-complete isolation in solitary confinement for months at a time. The children are sexually harassed by adults, housed in disgusting conditions, denied education and, in some cases, pushed to contemplating suicide.

Aug
1
2016
NYPD Use of Force against Assemblyman Shows Need to Reform Toxic, Biased Policing Culture

New York state assemblyman Michael Blake yesterday filed a formal complaint against the NYPD after an officer lifted him and slammed him against a gate when he tried to diffuse a street confrontation. The Bronx assemblyman filed his complaint with the Civilian Complaint Review Board, claiming excessive force by the NYPD, which he described as being related to his race. The incident occurred just as use of force by police against black people has become a pressing local and national issue.

Jul
21
2016
NYPD Releases Complete School Safety Data for First Time

The NYPD issued new school safety data today on the use of handcuffs and metal detectors in schools, and the number of arrests made by NYPD officers on school grounds, as required by amendments to the Student Safety Act passed last year.

Jul
12
2016
NYCLU: City Council Must Act Now to Make Police Encounters Safer

The New York Civil Liberties Union submitted testimony to the New York City Council today offering qualified support for three bills that would require public reporting on the use of force and misconduct by NYPD officers. Although the three bills (539-A, 606-B and 824-A) would increase transparency, the City Council must take more decisive action to change the behavior of NYPD officers and make police encounters safer by passing the Right to Know Act.

Jun
23
2016
Government Report Shows Broken Windows Policing Doesn’t Make New York Safer

The Department of Investigation’s Office of the Inspector General for the NYPD on Wednesday released a report that looked at the relationship between quality-of-life policing and serious crime. The report showed quality-of-life summons activity between 2010 and 2015 dramatically declined with no increase in felony crime. The results bolster what the New York Civil Liberties Union has known for years: the NYPD’s use of broken windows policing doesn’t make anyone safer.

Jun
15
2016
Civil Liberties Groups Urge NY Senate to Pass Legislation that Promotes Diversity in TV

The American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California (ACLU SoCal), the New York Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU Women’s Rights Project today released a joint statement supporting a New York state bill that would make New York the first state to create financial incentives for TV productions to hire women and people of color in writing and directing roles.

May
11
2016
NYCLU Sues Ramapo Police Department for Refusing to Disclose Critical Policies

The New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the Ramapo Police Department today after it refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request seeking basic information about how the controversial department operates. The NYCLU sought policies and data on a variety of policing tactics, such as the use of force, stops and temporary detentions, surveillance technologies and the enforcement of non-criminal offenses.

Mar
31
2016
Federal Judge Approves Solitary Confinement Overhaul in New York State

Federal Judge Shira A. Scheindlin today approved a settlement agreement between the New York Civil Liberties Union and New York State that will comprehensively overhaul solitary confinement in New York State -- one of the largest prison systems in the country -- and provide a framework for ending the state’s overreliance on extreme isolation.

Mar
15
2016
NYCLU Sues Buffalo Police Department for Refusing to Open its Books

The New York Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the Buffalo Police Department last evening after it refused to comply with a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request seeking basic information about how one of the largest police departments in the state functions. The NYCLU sought policies and data on a variety of policing tactics, such as the use of force, stops and temporary detentions, surveillance technologies and the enforcement of non-criminal offenses.

Mar
9
2016
No Charges in Unarmed Teen’s Death Shows Need for Police Accountability

The Justice Department announced yesterday that it would not convene a grand jury in the death of Ramarley Graham, an unarmed teenager who was shot and killed by an NYPD officer in his Bronx home while his grandmother was present four years ago. The Justice Department began its investigation after a Bronx grand jury failed to indict the officer involved in Ramarley Graham’s death. An earlier grand jury had indicted the officer on manslaughter charges, but a judge dismissed the case on a legal technicality. The officer remains employed by the NYPD.

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