Civil Rights -- Legislation Tracking Organizations
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- Affirmative Action
- Access to Education
- Criminal Justice
- Free Speech
- Housing Rights
- Human Rights
- Immigrants Rights
- Indigenous Peoples
- Juvenile Justice
- LGBT Rights
- Mental Health
- Technology & Surveillance
- Prisoner's Rights
- Racial Justice
- Religious Freedom
- Seniors & Elders
- Women's Rights
- Gender Equality
- Veteran's Rights
- Voting Rights
Here are a couple of organizations that maintain comprehensive lists of resources or do large-scale tracking of laws and cases:
Reviews state legislation and ballot initiatives that have affected affirmative action.
Here are individual organizations that work on affirmative action. We might want to do radio buttons or some kind of toggle to indicate whether they (1) provide legal services and/or (2) track legal developments.
A national not-for-profit working in the areas of affirmative action, equal opportunity, and diversity. Resources on the site include, Federal Agency resources, Legal issues, Public Policy and Legslative Affairs.
ACLU addresses issues such as Race and Criminal Justice, Race and Inequality in Education,
Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF) is a national organization that protects and promotes the civil rights of Asian Americans. By combining litigation, advocacy, education, and organizing.
Here is a link to Supreme Court cases and resources:
The site focuses on civil rights and equal opportunity for racial and ethnic groups in the United States.
The Leadership Conference is a 501(c)(4) organization that engages in legislative advocacy.
MALDEF is the nation’s leading Latino legal civil rights organization. Often described as the “law firm of the Latino community”, MALDEF promotes social change through advocacy, communications, community education, and litigation in the areas of education, employment, immigrant rights, and political access.
http://www.maldef.org/education/index.html (Litigation and Public Policy)
NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization.
SAMPLE LETTER TO YOUR U.S. SENATORS AND U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES MEMBER ON TRUMP PROPOSED 2018 BUDGET for quality education.
http://www.naacp.org/issues/civic-engagement/ (Civic Engagement)
STAND advocates for better and equal education standards for all children by utilizing a strong three-pillared approach: Parents, Politics, and Policy.
Natonal and State Campaigns
http://stand.org/national/action (TAKE ACTION)
Equality Federation develops tools and resources that help state partners be more effective in the fight for full equality. Here is a link to your state legislative action center:
The NCSL Criminal Justice Program tracks state legislative interests and actions such as: legislative interest in law enforcement.
NCSL Pretrial Policy Search By State:
ALEC task force on criminal justice, called the Justice Performance Project, has brought state legislators and stakeholders together to combat the trend of unforgiving and harsh criminal laws.
The NAACP supports an increase in trust and public safety by advancing effective law enforcement practices and has been involved in informing effective law enforcement practices since its inception.
http://www.naacp.org/criminal-justice-issues/ (Criminal Justice issues)
NCJA advocates for effective criminal justice policy and funding for state, local, and tribal justice assistance programs. NCJA tracks dozens of pieces of federal legislation which, if enacted, could impact state and local criminal justice policy and practice.
http://www.ncja.org/policy (Key issues and current legislation)
The Sentencing Project is a publication that works for a fair and effective U.S. criminal justice system by promoting reforms in sentencing policy, addressing unjust racial disparities and practices, and advocating for alternatives to incarceration. Current issues: sentencing policy, incarcination, racial disparity and drug policy.
https://www.sentencingproject.org/actions/4783/ ( How to get your Senators involved)
https://www.sentencingproject.org/actions/ (How to get involved and take action)
The Brennan Center uses a combination of inter-disciplinary research, innovative policy development, legislative advocacy, litigation, and communications work to win meaningful, measurable change in the public sector.
https://www.brennancenter.org/policy-proposals -(Policy Issues, Legislation and Court Cases)
The IFS promotes and defends the First Amendment rights to freely speak, assemble, publish, and petition the government through strategic litigation, communication, activism, training, research, and education. They track and analyze proposed legislation and regulations at the federal and state levels that could negatively affect these rights.
http://www.ifs.org/litigation/ (Current Litigation)
http://www.ifs.org/external-relations/ (Policy and Issues)
Free Speech For People.org engages in legal advocacy to advance a new jurisprudence on money in politics and to confront the misuse of the U.S. Constitution and
(Legal Advocacy Overview)
Legislative and Policy Program promotes legislation and policy that protects students’ and faculty’s right to freedom of speech, while combating measures that would restrict the exercise of that crucial right.
FIRE’s Stand Up For Speech Litigation Project is a national effort to eliminate unconstitutional speech codes through targeted First Amendment lawsuits.
BillTrack50 is a free service for citizens to look up information about federal and state bills and legislators.
The CHLP HIV Policy Resource Bank is a comprehensive database of materials to inform and support sound HIV advocacy.
https://www.hivlawandpolicy.org/state-hiv-laws (HIV LAWS BY STATE)
HIV Specific Criminal Laws / HIV and the LAW
https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/policies/law/index.html (HIV and the law)
The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program is the largest federal program focused specifically on providing HIV care and treatment services to people living with HIV.
HIV.GOV is a comprehensive site dealing with civil rights, workplace rights, and laws protecting people with HIV/AIDS .
GovTrack.US publishes the status of federal legislation, information about your representative and senators in Congress including voting records, and original research on bills and votes.
Browse bills in the U.S. Congress related to the subject HIV/AIDS.
https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/subjects/hivaids/6164 (HIV bills in Congress)
The Fair Housing Act protects people from discrimination when they are renting, buying, or securing financing for any housing. The prohibitions specifically cover discrimination because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability and the presence of children.
https://www.hud.gov/topics/rental_assistance/tenantrights (Tenant rights by State)
https://www.hud.gov/program_offices/fair_housing_equal_opp/online-complaint (Find your local office / File a complaint)
The National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that assures people with the lowest incomes in the United States have affordable and decent homes and hold federal, state and local policy makers accountable for solving the housing problems of low income people.
http://nlihc.org/takeaction (How to Take Action)
http://cqrcengage.com/nlihc/Issues?14 (Policy Focus / Election Map)
The National Fair Housing Alliance is dedicated to ending housing discrimination and fostering diverse, inclusive communities through advocacy.
Amnesty International is a global movement of millions of people demanding human rights for all people. The site offers information on research, mobilization and advocacy!
United for Human Rights (UHR) is an international, not-for-profit organization dedicated to implementing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights at local, regional, national and international levels.
http://www.humanrights.com/take-action/get-active.html (Many ways to GET ACTIVE!)
United Nations System inter-governmental body responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the world.
Democratic governance, as supported by the United Nations emphasizes the role of individuals and peoples — all of them, without any exclusion — in shaping their human growth and the human development of societies.
http://www.un.org/en/sections/issues-depth/democracy/index.html#DHR (Democracy and Human Rights)
The NAACP are frontline advocates committed to raising awareness for political, educational, social and economic equality of minority group citizens in the electoral process. With approximately 2,000 adult branches, youth councils, and college chapters in 49 states, 5 countries and the District of Columbia, the NAACP is actively engaged in increasing the African American responsiveness of citizens to be fully engaged in the democratic process.
http://www.naacp.org/issues/civic-engagement/ (Civic Engagement - GET INVOLVED)
The Advocates for Human Rights implements international human rights standards to promote civil society and to reinforce the rule of law. By involving volunteers in research, education, and advocacy, we build broad constituencies in the United States and in communities around the world.
https://www.theadvocatesforhumanrights.org/human_rights_organizations -(A list of Human Rights Organizations
Be part of The Advocates for Human Rights' life-saving, life-changing work. Become an advocate for human rights today.
GovTrack.us tracks the United States Congress and helps Americans participate in their national legislature.
Browse bills in the U.S. Congress related to the subject Human rights.
https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/subjects/human_rights/6223 (Track bills in Congress)
https://www.govtrack.us/start (Research and track legislation in the United States Congress, including Members of Congress, bills and resolutions, voting records, and committee activity)
The ACLU offers information on ICE, detention, State/Local Immigration Laws, deportation and many other relevant topics.
America's Voice works in partnership with progressive, faith-based, labor, civil rights, and grassroots groups, networks, and leaders to policies and legislation that will stabilize the lives of 11 million Americans-in-waiting and put them on the road to full citizenship.
Keep track of House and Senate immigration legislation and immigration reform legislation, as bills are introduced, move through committee, and onto the floor.
The Policy and Strategy Section supports and coordinates the policy work of the Division, providing a focal point for proactive policy development and legislative proposals.
The American Immigration Lawyers Association is the national association of immigration lawyers established to promote justice, advocate for fair and reasonable immigration law and policy, advance the quality of immigration. Topics: Congressional Updages, Pending legislation, enacted legislation and upcoming hearings.
The mission of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) is to work with and educate immigrants, community organizations, and the legal sector to continue to build a democratic society that values diversity and the rights of all people. Get involved in : Civic Engagement, Legal Assistance and Policy and Advocacy
USCRI was established "To protect the rights and address the needs of persons in forced or voluntary migration worldwide and support their transition to a dignified life."
The Immigrant Policy Project provides nonpartisan research, analysis, and technical assistance to state legislators and legislative staff across the country on federal and state immigration-related laws and promising practices in immigrant integration.
Topics such as: State Immigration Laws, Sanctuary Policy, Refugee Resettlement and an Immigration Database.
https://www.un.org/development/desa/indigenouspeoples/ General Info on all the programs and resources offered.
UNPFII is the UN's central coordinating body for matters relating to the concerns and rights of the world's indigenous peoples.
Amnesty works with Indigenous Peoples to develop urgently needed laws to protect their lands, cultures and livelihoods. At the international level, Indigenous Peoples have made their voices heard and effectively lobbied governments. Get involved!
https://www.amnesty.org/en/get-involved/take-action/ GET INVOLVED
The ACLU is committed to defending the rights of American Indians and tribes to be free from discrimination and governmental abuse of power, whether the government be federal, state, or tribal.
NCSL provides up to date, real time information about juvenile justice legislation that has been introduced or enacted in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
CJJ is a nationwide coalition of State Advisory Groups (SAGs) and allies dedicated to preventing children and youth from becoming involved in the courts and upholding the highest standards of care when youth are charged with wrongdoing and enter the justice system.
CJJ serves and supports State Advisory Groups that are principally responsible for monitoring and supporting their state’s progress in addressing the four core requirements of the JJDPA:
http://www.juvjustice.org/federal-policy (Federal Policy)
CDF advocates for the humane and rehabilitative treatment of all children in the juvenile justice system, and ultimately, for systemic reform at the local, state and federal levels.
http://www.childrensdefense.org/take-action/ (Ways To Take Action)
http://www.childrensdefense.org/policy/justice/ (Policy Priorities)
ABA monitors legislative, fiscal, policy and administrative changes in juvenile justice systems across the nation.
https://www.americanbar.org/groups/criminal_justice.html (Policies, Resources and Projects)
HRC, along with many advocates, work to lobby members of Congress on critical legislation that would greatly affect the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Americans.
https://www.hrc.org/resources/federal-legislation (Legislation and Policies Supported)
Freedom for All Americans is the bipartisan campaign to secure full nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people nationwide. Check out the 2018 Legislative Tracker!
Movement Advancement Project is an independent think tank that provides rigorous research, insight and analysis.
http://www.lgbtmap.org/equality-maps/non_discrimination_laws (Non-Discrimination Laws by State and Issue)
http://www.lgbtmap.org/lgbt-movement-overviews/lgbt-advocacy-organizations (Advocacy Organizations and Resources)
Freedom for All Americans is the bipartisan campaign to secure full nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people nationwide.
Legislation related to LGBTQ discrimination – including comprehensive nondiscrimination bills, bills blocking local control, anti-transgender bills, and religious refusal bills.
SPLC works with the courts to ensure that LGBT people achieve full equality under the law and focuses primarily on the Southeast, where relatively few organizations advocate for the LGBT community.
https://www.splcenter.org/issues/lgbt-rights (Latest news and cases)
GovTrack.us tracks the United States Congress and helps Americans participate in their national legislature.
Track bills in the U.S. Congress related to the subject Mental health.
The nation's leading community-based nonprofit dedicated to addressing the needs of those living with mental illness and to promoting the overall mental health of all Americans.
Issues such as: Current Legislation, Legislative Priorities, Advocacy Network
The National Council advocates for policies that ensure people who have mental health and substance use disorders have access to comprehensive, evidence-based health care services.
Key Legislations, Find your officials, Advocacy and ways to Take Action
GET INVOLVED IN ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH ADVOCACY!
Mental Health reform legislation in Congress
Take action on Advocacy
The ACLU has been at the forefront of the struggle to prevent the entrenchment of a surveillance state by challenging the secrecy of the government’s surveillance and watchlisting practices; its violations of our rights to privacy, free speech, due process, and association; and its stigmatization of minority communities and activists disproportionately targeted by surveillance.
EFF is the leading nonprofit organization defending civil liberties in the digital world.
https://act.eff.org/ (TAKE ACTION)
https://www.eff.org/issues/privacy (Privacy Topics and Updates)
CCR is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. CCR has consistently sought to expose and oppose government surveillance.
EPIC is a public interest research center in Washington, established to focus public attention on emerging privacy and civil liberties issues and to protect privacy, freedom of expression, and democratic values in the information age.
The Domestic Surveillance Project focuses on the privacy and civil liberties implications of emerging technologies used to conduct domestic surveillance. The project focuses on technologies that can be used in public surveillance of the masses, including drones, biometrics (e.g. facial recognition), and license plate readers.
https://epic.org/campaigns/ (Track privacy campaigns)
https://www.aclu.org/issues/prisoners-rights#current (Current Issues)
https://www.aclu.org/issues/public-policy (Public Policy)
The non-profit/non-partisan Prison Policy Initiative challenges over-criminalization and mass incarceration through research, advocacy, and organizing.
https://www.prisonpolicy.org/about.html (Successful campaigns)
https://www.prisonpolicy.org/cases.html (Litigation success)
https://www.aclu.org/issues/racial-justice#current (Current Issues)
EJI is committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States.
Support advocacy and reform efforts, get politically active and write your legislators to encourage their support for Prison Sentencing Reform.
https://eji.org/get-involved (Get Involved)
Advocate against racial disparity and injustice.
2017 RELIGIOUS FREEDOM RESTORATION ACT LEGISLATION
USCIRF is an independent, bipartisan U.S. federal government commission which makes policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State, and Congress. USCIRF Commissioners are appointed by the President and the Congressional leadership of both political parties.
Be able to track all new policy updates related to the status of religious freedom in the countries USCIRF monitors
http://www.uscirf.gov/advising-government/government-correspondence (Government correspondence)
Monitor your State's Legilation on Financial Crimes Against The Elderly
Justice in Aging is a national organization that uses the power of law to fight senior poverty by securing access to affordable health care, economic security, and the courts for older adults with limited resources.
Track advocacy and litigation cases
One of the nation's largest nonpartisan seniors groups.
Track bills in Congress that impact Social Security, Medicare, and other senior issues.
http://seniorsleague.org/track/ (Bill Tracking)
http://seniorsleague.org/take-action/ (Ways to take action and advocate!)
The NCEA provides the latest information regarding research, training, best practices, news and resources on elder abuse, neglect and exploitation to professionals and the public.
Government actions impacting older adults and elders experience abuse, neglect and exploitation.
https://ncea.acl.gov/whatwedo/policy/index.html Government Laws and Public Policies
https://ncea.acl.gov/makeadifference/index.html Ways to get involved - Make a Difference
The ACLU Women’s Rights Project deals with these and other issues: violence against women, rights in the workplace, women and criminal justice.
A central and searchable repository of federal government resources, tools, and publications of interest to women. Issues such as: Equal Pay, Knowing your rights, Pregnancy rights.
Planned Parenthood is under attack like never before. Here’s how you can fight back NOW.
NOW is the grassroots arm of the women’s movement and is dedicated to its multi-issue and multi-strategy approach to women’s rights.
The National Action Campaigns are a set of action priorities for activists around the country.
NOW’s five campaigns are: (1) End the Criminalization of Trauma; (2) Ratify the Equal Rights Amendment; (3) Mobilize for Reproductive Justice; (4) Advance Voting Rights; and (5) Protect Immigrant Rights.
The House Committee on Veterans' Affairs is the authorizing committee for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The committee is responsible for recommending legislation expanding, curtailing, or fine-tuning existing laws relating to veterans' benefits.
https://veterans.house.gov/115th-congress-legislation/ Congress Legislation
Track Current Legislations
Legiscan provides the nation's first impartial real-time legislative tracking service designed for both public citizens and government affairs professionals across all sectors in organizations large and small.
Bills pending US Congress Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee
The National Conference of State Legislatures works to bring you updated information about bills that have been introduced in the 50 states and the District of Columbia related to military and veterans issues.
http://www.ncsl.org/research/military-and-veterans-affairs.aspx Legislation Tracker
Through litigation and advocacy, the ACLU is fighting back against attempts to curtail an essential right in our democracy, the right to vote. ISSUES: promoting access to the ballot, voter suppression, voter rights and restoration and gerrymandering.
The Brennan Center is a nonpartisan law and policy institute at New York University that seeks to improve our systems of democracy and justice. Its work ranges from voting rights to campaign finance reform.
https://www.brennancenter.org/issues/voting-rights-elections Voting Rights and Elections
Common Cause, is a nonpartisan citizens advocacy group that is fighting to inmsure that every adult American has easy access to the ballot and that every vote is counted as cast. There are chapters in 35 states and members in all 50 states. The Common Cause website has a map that you click on to see if there is a chapter near you.
http://www.commoncause.org/issues/voting-and-elections/ Many ways to take action and advocate.