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Deborah Archer Becomes ACLU's First Black President in Its 101-Year History

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) just announced Deborah Archer as its new president, reports The Associated Press. Archer will become the first Black person to head the organization’s 69-person board in its 101-year history.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by ACLU (@aclu_nationwide) The former ACLU fellow will replace Susan Herman who stepped down after leading the board for 12 years through lots of controversial moments which include the emergence of civil liberties and privacy concerns in the digital age along with the Trump administration. “After beginning my career as an ACLU fellow, it is an honor to come full circle and now lead the organization as board president,” shared Archer in a statement, according to Black Enterprise. “The ACLU has proven itself as an invaluable voice in the fight for civil rights in the last four years of the Trump era, and we are better positioned than ever to face the work ahead. This organization has been part of every...

Feb 2, 2021

Your Car Carries A lot of Information About You. Now the Georgia Supreme Court Will Decide If Police Have Access To It

You may not always realize it, but your car can hold a lot of information about you. Holding personal contacts, location information and more, essentially makes them “roving computers.” So, how does that impact the fourth amendment? The fourth amendment is what protects you from unreasonable search and seizures. However, there’s a “vehicle exception,” which means police don’t need a warrant to search your car for physical items. Now, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) says that data isn’t covered under that exception. Spurred by the case Mobley v. State in Georgia, the ACLU argued in an amicus brief that “cops cannot conduct warrantless searches of computers — even if that computer happens to be on wheels.” The Mobley case began after a deadly car crash in Georgia. Police took data from the Event Data Recorder — or “black box” — on Mobley’s car in order to figure out his speed before the crash. They used this information to increase the severity of charges against Mobley....

Jun 18, 2019

The ACLU is Suing the FBI for Information On Its 'Black Identity Extremists' Report

The ACLU and the Center for Media Justice are suing the FBI for records related to a controversial 2017 report that cited a rise in Black extremism following police-involved shooting deaths of African Americans. The report, titled “Black Identity Extremists Likely Motivated To Target Law Enforcement Officers” claims that law enforcement officials were being targeted as protests against police violence erupted around the country. In 2014, the ACLU submitted a public records request asking for all documentation since 2014 that used the phrases “black nationalist,” ”black identity extremist,” and “black separatist,” according to the Associated Press. The lawsuit is happening because the FBI is withholding these documents and in some cases, refusing to search entire categories, according to the ACLU. “The FBI’s baseless claims about the fictitious group of ‘Black Identity Extremists’ throws open the door to racial profiling of Black people and Black-led organizations who are using their...

Mar 22, 2019

Facebook Settles Historic Civil Rights Lawsuit Alleging Discriminatory Ad Practices

Facebook has settled a civil rights lawsuit that alleged the company participated in discriminatory ad practices. Facebook’s ad targeting system allows companies to exclude certain groups from seeing ads for things like housing and jobs. The settlement will require the company to essentially overhaul it’s ad system, which is its major money maker. It’s a first of kind settlement and one that could have huge implications for the company moving forward. The company will create a separate space on Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger for advertisers who are making job, housing, or credit ads. Within that space, Facebook will get rid of targeted advertisement that allowed people to target ads based on age, gender, and options associated with “protected characteristics or groups” according to the ACLU . People won’t be able to target ads based on a ZIP code or geographic area that’s less than a 15-mile radius. And, when developing “Lookalike” audiences for advertisers, Facebook will stop...

Mar 20, 2019

The ACLU is Suing a California Sheriff for Blocking Black Lives Matter Activists on Facebook

The ACLU of California is suing Scott R. Jones, the sheriff of Sacramento County, for blocking two Black Lives Matter Activists on Facebook. According to the lawsuit, Black Lives Matter leaders Tanya Faison and Sonia Lewis were censored after posting critical comments on Jones’ official Facebook page. The two are founders of the Sacramento chapter of BLM. Faison and Lewis’ posts were in response to Jones asking for more insight on how to handle the future relationship of Sacramento Sheriff’s department and Black Lives Matter. Both of their posts about Jones and the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department were removed and their pages were banned. The ACLU’s complaint alleges that Jones’ actions against the two were “based on the content of their speech, their viewpoint, and their identity,” and violated their First Amendment rights to free speech. This isn’t the first lawsuit of its kind. Politicians in Arizona, Georgia, and Virginia were also sued for banning people from their official...

Feb 1, 2019

Civil Rights Groups Want To Stop Big Tech From Selling Facial Recognition Software To the Government

Facial recognition technology is the latest tool that big tech is racing to perfect and a coalition of 85 civil rights organizations are trying to stop the country’s largest tech companies from selling it to the government. The groups, which include the American Civil Liberties Union, Muslim Justice League, Color of Change and the National Immigration Law Center, sent letters today to Google , Microsoft and Amazon urging the companies to not sell their facial recognition technologies to the government. “History has clearly taught us that the government will exploit technologies like face surveillance to target communities of color, religious minorities, and immigrants,” said Nicole Ozer, Technology and Civil Liberties director for the ACLU of California, in a press release . “We are at a crossroads with face surveillance, and the choices made by these companies now will determine whether the next generation will have to fear being tracked by the government for attending a protest,...

Jan 15, 2019

ACLU Files Charges Against Facebook For Gender Discrimination in Ads

Facebook is under fire again for its advertising. According to lawsuits from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the social media giant is allowing companies to post ads using discriminatory methods. Last week, the ACLU filed charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against Facebook and 10 other employers alleging gender discrimination. Abas USA, Defenders, Nebraska Furniture Mart, City of Greensboro North Carolina, Need Work Today, Renewal by Andersen LLC, Rice Tire, JK Moving Services, Enhanced Roofing & Modeling, and Xenith were named in the lawsuits. Abas USA released a statement in response to the lawsuit saying that it used two separate ads — one that targeted male candidates and another that targeted females. “We ran the ads together for one week, and they produced no applicants,” said Abas USA. “This was the first and last time that we used Facebook ads targeted towards men and women.” Facebook’s ad tools allow companies to select “all,” or target...

Sep 24, 2018