ACLU-NCA Newsletters

July 28, 2015

Read current and past ACLU-NCA newsletters. The publication contains news, announcements, and upcoming events.

ACLU-NCA Photo Gallery

July 28, 2015

Did you know? The ACLU-NCA has an online photo gallery! You may view photos from past events, panel discussions, and other notable activities. 

ACTION ALERT: Ban the Box Rally!

July 27, 2015

Join us at the White House on Thursday, July 30, 2015, at 11:00 AM to tell President Barack Obama to Ban the Box on federal jobs! You may view details here: ow.ly/Q3ukK Please RSVP to tray@aclu.org.

Position Announcement: Fall 2015 Law Clerks

July 21, 2015

The ACLU of the Nation’s Capital seeks law clerks to work part-time during the fall school semester, ideally as part of a law school externship program through which students will receive school credit. Law clerks gain a comprehensive, hands-on introduction to the legal work of one of the nation’s major advocacy organizations. 

The 2015 H Street Festival

July 14, 2015

The H Street Festival is a yearly street festival held in the eastern blocks of H Street in the Near Northeast neighborhood. Join us at the ACLU-NCA booth! ACLU-NCA volunteers will engage with festival attendees, discuss our work, and hand out ACLU-NCA giveaways. This is a great opportunity to get involved and learn more about our organization. 

The Council Establishes June 26 as "LGBT Equality Day" in the District of Columbia

July 14, 2015

On Tuesday, July 14, 2015, at the Thirteenth Legislative (additional) Meeting, the DC Council unanimously passed the, "LGBT Equality Day Recognition Resolution of 2015." The purpose of the resolution is to recognize June 26 as LGBT Equality Day in the District of Columbia, to reflect on the importance of the 3 major rulings issued by the United States Supreme Court that have advanced the rights of all LGBT people. You may view the full text of the resolution here and below. 

ACLU-NCA mourns the loss of the President of our Board of Directors and dear friend, Edward L. O’Brien

July 13, 2015

The ACLU of the Nation’s Capital mourns the heartbreaking loss of the President of our Board of Directors and dear friend, Edward L. O’Brien. Ed, who became a member of the ACLU more than 25 years ago, was a leader in educating of people about the law, democracy, and human rights. He co-founded Street Law as a graduate student at Georgetown in 1971, expanding the program to South Africa and leading initiatives in Latin America, East and West Africa, and Eastern Europe. He joined the Board of the ACLU of the Nation’s Capital in the fall of 2010 and served as Vice President from 2012 through 2014 before becoming President. From his quick mind to his easy smile, Ed brought an unparalleled passion for civil rights to the ACLU. He will be deeply missed.

ACLU-NCA Testimony on the Death with Dignity Act of 2015

July 10, 2015

On Friday, July 10, 2015, the ACLU-NCA testified on Bill 21-38, the Death with Dignity Act of 2015. The stated purpose of Bill 21-38, the Death with Dignity Act of 2015, is to establish procedures and safeguards regarding the request for and dispensation of covered medications to qualified patients who are terminally ill and wish to die in a humane and dignified manner.

The ACLU believes that the right to receive or continue medical treatment or to have treatment withheld or withdrawn, consistent with a person's expressed wishes or best interests, is based upon the fundamental civil liberties principles of autonomy and self-determination, privacy, liberty, and the freedom of thought and religion. A person with decisional capacity[1] has a fundamental right to make her or his own health care treatment decisions. This includes the right to decide to receive or continue treatment, or to have treatment, including life-sustaining measures, withheld or withdrawn. If a patient is suffering from a terminal illness and meets the stringent eligibility requirements found in this legislation, it should not be the role of government to tell a patient that he or she may not make a choice to alleviate his or her suffering.

Five states currently allow their terminally ill residents to make a determination about how much suffering to endure and when to hasten a peaceful death.[2] Oregon, Washington, Vermont, Montana and New Mexico now grant individuals that right. Several other jurisdictions are considering such legislation.[3] These states honor until the very end of life the self-determination that is so valued in our culture and our Constitution. The District must not pass up the opportunity to join them.

Joint Statement on the Metropolitan Police Department's Body Worn Camera Program

June 29, 2015

Authors: District of Columbia Office of Open Government/Board of Ethics and Government Accountability; Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press; Open Government Coalition; American Civil Liberties Union of the Nation’s Capital; D.C. Police Union 

Mayor Muriel Bowser, in April, proposed outfitting every patrol officer with a body-worn camera to record interactions with the public. She announced the expansion at her State of the District address, claiming “[a]ccountability is embedded, and will be embedded in everything this administration does.” The goals were to improve interactions with civilians, assist investigations of officer misconduct, and promote public trust of the MPD. The cost:  $5.1 million in fiscal year 2016 and a blanket exemption denying the public access to the videos.

The proposed Freedom of Information Act exemption prompted overwhelming opposition from transparency and civil liberty advocates. In response, the Council removed the exemption before its first vote on the bill.

In a meeting with the Council Tuesday, the Mayor issued an unprecedented threat. If the Council does not enact the blanket FOIA exemption, the Chief Financial Officer might refuse to certify the 2016 budget as balanced. If that happens, the Council would have to reopen debate on the budget and add $1.5 million to the MPD appropriation or enact the exemption. These are costs that should have been contemplated before the pilot was launched.  

Help ACLU celebrate history at the Supreme Court!

June 23, 2015

Within the next week, the Supreme Court will rule if marriage equality is the law of the land! If the decision does not come down on Thursday, June 25, 2015, on Friday, June 26, 2015, and Monday, June 29, 2015, we will need loud and proud ACLU supporters on the Supreme Court steps early in the morning to wave flags and BE A PART OF HISTORY!

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