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News & Press Releases

Sep
8
2016
Outdated Abortion Law is Inconsistent with Women’s Rights, Says Attorney General

The New York Civil Liberties Union welcomed an opinion today by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman clarifying that women’s reproductive rights affirmed in Roe v Wade supersede restrictions in New York’s older and existing abortion laws. The Supreme Court has found it unconstitutional to deny women the right to abortion later in pregnancy if a woman’s health is at risk or the fetus is not viable, yet New York law, drafted earlier and left uncorrected, has criminalized abortion care later in pregnancy.

Aug
30
2016
NYCLU Settles Lawsuit Against Ramapo Police for Keeping Critical Policies Secret

The New York Civil Liberties Union has agreed to a settlement with the Ramapo Police Department that a judge is expected to approve today. The NYCLU filed the lawsuit in May after the department 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.

Aug
30
2016
NYCLU: Ruling Modernizes Definition of Parent

The New York Court of Appeals today ruled that the current legal definition of a “parent” must be broadened to include partners who are not a child’s biological or adoptive parent. The court overturned a series of its past decisions by finding the state’s current definition “has become unworkable when applied to increasingly varied familial relationships.”

Aug
26
2016
NYCLU Takes Action in Wake of Severe Dysfunction and Discrimination in East Ramapo Schools

The New York Civil Liberties Union filed an appeal with the State Education Department Thursday challenging the refusal of the widely discredited East Ramapo School Board to seat Sabrina Charles-Pierre for the full two-year term to which she was duly elected in May. According to the NYCLU’s legal papers, this is just the latest example of the board’s dysfunction and consistent disempowerment of the school district’s largely Black and Latino public school community that had actively supported her candidacy.

Aug
19
2016
Overbroad Campaign Finance Bill Threatens Free Speech

The New York Civil Liberties Union sent a letter this week to Governor Cuomo raising serious concerns about a bill that could chill constitutionally protected speech and discourage people from contributing to nonprofit organizations that fight for causes they care about. The governor could sign this bill into law within a matter of days.

Jul
8
2016
NYCLU: After National Spate of Killings, We Must Rebuild Trust Between People and Police

In response to the police killings of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, and the murder of five police officers by snipers in Dallas, Texas, the New York Civil Liberties Union released the following statement, attributable to Executive Director, Donna Lieberman:

Jun
17
2016
Historic Public Defense Reform Passes in New York

In the final hours of the 2016 legislative session lawmakers passed historic legislation that promises to fundamentally reform the state’s public defense system. Provided the governor signs the bill (S.8114/A.10706) into law, the state will take responsibility for funding public defense for the first time since the Supreme Court held, more than fifty years ago, that the state must provide a lawyer to criminal defendants who cannot afford to pay for a private attorney.

Jun
16
2016
NYCLU Applauds Senate for Passing Public Defense Bill, Urges Assembly to Pass Before End of Session

The New York State Senate today unanimously passed a statewide public defense bill that would fundamentally reform public defense services. The New York Civil Liberties Union is among groups that have advocated for passage of the bill. It now goes to the Assembly where it is expected to pass.

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.

Jun
9
2016
NYCLU Applauds Campaign Finance Reform Opinion Issued by Governor’s Office

Governor Cuomo’s counsel, Alphonso David, issued an opinion letter yesterday outlining important steps that would lead to critical campaign finance reforms. The following statement can be attributed to Arthur Eisenberg, legal director at the New York Civil Liberties Union:

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