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Open Records Complaints Filed Against 14 State And Local Agencies

Posted: Dec 19, 2014 |Category: Open Government

ACCESS/RI, of which the ACLU of Rhode Island is an active member, has filed 14 complaints citing a total of 53 violations of the state’s Access to Public Records Act (APRA) with the Rhode Island attorney general. The complaints stem from an audit released in September to determine whether state and municipal agencies were in compliance with amendments enacted by the General Assembly in 2012 to strengthen APRA.

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Data Shows Racial Profiling Increasing In Searches During Motor Vehicle Stops

Posted: Dec 15, 2014 |Category: Civil Rights Criminal Justice Discrimination Racial/Ethnic Discrimination Police Practices

As part of an ongoing analysis of racial disparities in Rhode Island, the ACLU of Rhode Island today announced that racial disparities in searches during motor vehicle stops appear to be increasing.

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ACLU Applauds New Federal Court Rules Allowing Public To Take Notes

Posted: Dec 09, 2014 |Category: Open Government

The ACLU of Rhode Island Tuesday commended the federal judiciary for promoting greater transparency in court proceedings by allowing court spectators to take notes without having to obtain prior approval.

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ACLU Sues Providence Police Again For Violating Free Speech Rights of Protesters

Posted: Dec 08, 2014 |Category: Active Case Free Speech Right to Petition & Protest

The ACLU of Rhode Island has filed a federal lawsuit against the Providence Police Department for violating the “clearly established” free speech rights of two protesters last year at a fundraiser in Roger Williams Park for then-Gubernatorial candidate, and now Governor-elect, Gina Raimondo. The suit alleges that the police department’s actions amounted to a “willful” violation of the “constitutionally protected right of people to peaceably assemble and demonstrate in public parks,” and seeks various court-imposed remedies, including monetary damages. The suit notes that only six months earlier in another ACLU case, a federal judge condemned the Providence police department’s practice of “clearing vast public spaces” of people engaged in free speech activity without legal cause.

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ACLU Testifies Before RI Vehicle Value Commission

Posted: Dec 05, 2014 |Category: Due Process

The ACLU of Rhode Island testified Friday before the R.I. Vehicle Value Commission to urge the Commission to stop using unrealistic vehicle valuation to determine car taxes and adopt a meaningful appeals process for Rhode Island car owners.

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Investigating Firefighter for Silent Support of Anti-Racism Protest is Troubling

Posted: Dec 02, 2014 |Category: Free Speech

"Obviously, a government agency can set reasonable limits on what employees can say or do in their official capacities, and we don’t wish to minimize the complicated nature of issues that can sometimes be raised by government employee speech.  But the investigation of the firefighter’s silent expression in this instance is problematic and undeserving of any sort of punitive response."

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Preventing the Next Ferguson

Posted: Nov 26, 2014 |Category: Civil Rights Criminal Justice Discrimination Racial/Ethnic Discrimination Free Speech Police Practices Right to Petition & Protest The "War on Drugs" Voting Rights

As the country engages in a long-overdue conversation about race, policing and justice, it’s easy to believe that Rhode Island will never be the topic of that conversation. Yet, we know that’s simply not true--it has happened here before and is likely to happen again if changes are not made. With your help, we can tackle these issues in Rhode Island.

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All 2014 News Releases