The New York Civil Liberties Union works in the courts as a public-interest law firm, bringing constitutional test cases in state and federal court. The NYCLU's legal program balances enforcement litigation, or cases that enforce previously established standards, and cutting-edge test case litigation, or cases that seek to set new standards. While litigation alone does not represent a complete strategy to preserve and enhance civil liberties, the lawsuits pursued by the NYCLU are important because of the particular wrongs they right, the individuals and groups they protect, and the constitutional doctrines they establish. Our litigation complements our proactive program of public education and advocacy.



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NYCLU v. Buffalo Police Department

The New York Civil Liberties Union, with pro bono counsel from Shearman & Sterling LLP, filed a lawsuit against the Buffalo Police Department for unlawfully denying the NYCLU’s requests for the full slate of records related to police misconduct authorized to be disclos

April 20, 2021 Police Accountability

P.G. v. Jefferson County et al

The New York Civil Liberties Union and the American Civil Liberties Union’s National Prison Project sued Jefferson County over its discriminatory and life-endangering policy of denying prescribed medication to people with opioid use disorder in the Jefferson County Jail.

April 5, 2021 Criminal Justice Reform