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News & Press Releases

Jan
13
2016
Governor’s Progressive Agenda Deserves Support but Must Include Statewide Public Defense

In response to Governor Cuomo’s State of the State address, the New York Civil Liberties Union released the following statement, attributable to Executive Director Donna Lieberman:

Dec
16
2015
Historic Settlement Overhauls Solitary Confinement in New York

The New York Civil Liberties Union and New York State today announced a settlement agreement 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. The agreement will result in the end of traditional solitary confinement for more than 1,100 people -- one-quarter of the current solitary population -- who will either be placed in alternative units or provided with less isolating, more rehabilitative conditions.

Dec
10
2015
Stop-and-Frisk Down, Safety Up: NYCLU Data Analysis

Stop-and-frisks have fallen dramatically while crime in New York City remains at record lows, according to data analysis released today by the New York Civil Liberties Union. As stops fell 93 percent between 2011 and 2014, murders and shootings have plummeted and other serious crimes have dropped significantly as well.

Nov
10
2015
NYCLU Commends Plan to Increase Minimum Wage to $15 for State Workers

New York State will gradually increase the minimum hourly wage for state workers to $15 an hour, Governor Cuomo announced on Tuesday through news reports, placing New York’s public employees far ahead of other states on minimum wage. Using executive authority, the governor will gradually increase the hourly rate: State workers in New York City are set to earn $15 an hour by the end of 2018, and state workers outside of New York City will see wages rise to $15 by an hour by the end of 2021.

Oct
16
2015
Proposed Rikers Rules Unlikely to Reduce Violence and Will Hinder Rehabilitation

The New York Civil Liberties Union will testify today in front of the New York City Board of Correction, urging its members to reject rule changes proposed by the city’s Department of Correction that create obstacles to rehabilitation by restricting visitations between people who are incarcerated and their family members, and rolling back groundbreaking reforms that limited solitary confinement sentences to 30 days.

Aug
18
2015
NYCLU Motion: Garner Grand Jury Records Must Be Public

The New York Civil Liberties Union today requested that the New York Court of Appeals review a lower court’s decision to keep secret records from the Grand Jury which failed to indict an NYPD officer in the death of Eric Garner. The lack of accountability for Eric Garner’s death dramatically shook the public’s confidence in the grand jury system and subsequently prompted conflicting policy proposals, including and up to abolishing the grand jury system altogether.

Jul
23
2015
NYC Report a Monumental Step toward Safe, Nurturing Schools

The de Blasio administration today released a report outlining ways to improve the climate in New York City public schools while minimizing the use of suspensions, arrests, summonses and other excessively harsh discipline practices that push students out of school, increase drop-out rates and unfairly impact students of color and those with special needs. The report, Safety with Dignity, details policy recommendations made by the Mayor’s Leadership Team on School Climate and Discipline, a team which included New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Donna Lieberman.

Jul
16
2015
Garner Anniversary Underscores Need for Vast Culture Shift, Smart Criminal Justice Policies

On the one-year anniversary of the chokehold death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island father of six accused of selling loose cigarettes illegally, the leadership of the New York Civil Liberties Union released the following statement. It is attributable to Executive Director Donna Lieberman:

Jun
24
2015
State Legislative Leaders Fail to Agree to Any Major Criminal Justice Reforms

Despite countless protests, the deaths of Eric Garner, Kalief Browder and too many others, and growing distrust between communities and law enforcement agencies, New York State’s legislative leaders announced they have failed to agree to any major criminal justice reforms, inaction denounced by the New York Civil Liberties Union.

May
6
2015
Rikers Violence Requires Focused Reforms, NYCLU Testifies

At a hearing examining violence at and oversight of Rikers Island, the New York Civil Liberties Union will today urge the New York City Council to consider the 11 bills currently before the Council within the context of broader reforms focused on the root factors contributing to the jail’s over-population.

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