Civil rights advocates seek protection for peaceful protest at Occupy Boston

Civil rights attorneys from the National Lawyers Guild and the American Civil Liberties Union went to court today seeking to protect the rights of free speech, assembly, petition, and association for demonstrators at Occupy Boston in Dewey Square, in light of the heavy-handed police crackdowns in recent days on Occupy Wall Street protesters in New York, Portland, Ore., and Oakland, Calif.

The suit, filed in Superior Court, seeks a Declaration from the Court recognizing the right to peaceful protest and assembly under the U.S. Constitution and the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights, as well as an injunction to prevent police from staging another night-time raid, such as the one that began Oct. 10, 2011 and continued into the early morning hours of Oct. 11, when the Boston Police conducted a mass arrest of 141 people in the middle of the night.

News release | Legal documents

New Civil Liberties Minute: Every Moment

Who in the United States would actually dare suggest that the government has the right to monitor the movement of everyone in the United States every minute of day? The answer is...

Listen to episode | podcast page

Testimony in support of safe and healthy pregnancy care for women in prison

The ACLU of Massachusetts strongly supports House Bill 2234, An Act Relative to Safe Pregnancies and Related Health Care for Female Inmates. It is time for our General Laws to prohibit the shackling of women during pregnancy, labor and delivery in Massachusetts state and county correctional facilities; to outline basic standards of prenatal and postpartum care to ensure safe and healthy outcomes for female prisoners and their pregnancies; and to promote good reproductive health for women returning to their communities.

Testimony (PDF)

Teams from US Dept. of Justice and US Attorney General's office arrive in Springfield on Monday to intervene re: voting rights

"The City of Springfield appears to again not be complying with the laws designed to insure all voters have equal access to the polls, which fundamentally is undemocratic," said Bill Newman, director of the ACLU's Western Massachusetts Legal Office.

News release | Read more about voting rights

New Civil Liberties Minutes on the "Occupy" Protests

Two new Civil Liberties Minute episodes highlight the importance of the "Occupy" movement across the country and in the Commonwealth:

Occupy Protests
Can the police arrest you for demonstrating in a public park? Inquiring minds occupying Wall Street (and Main Street) want to know.

The One Percent
What does the constitutional guarantee of equal protection say about the wealth of the top 1% of Americans and the bottom 90% being equal?

Listen to all of the CLM episodes on the podcast page