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Category Archives: Civil Liberties

Immigration Court Backlog Nears 400,000

“The number of cases awaiting resolution in the Immigration Courts had grown to 396,552 by the end of July 2014. This backlog increased by nearly 75,000 cases, or 22 percent, since the start of fiscal year 2013, according to very timely government enforcement data obtained by the Transactional Access Records Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University. TheContinue Reading

Newly Revealed NSA Program ICREACH Extends the NSA’s Reach Even Further

EFF:  Turns out, the DEA and FBI may know what medical conditions you have, whether you are having an affair, where you were last night, and more—all without any knowing that you have ever broken a law. That’s because the DEA and FBI, as part of over 1000 analysts at 23 U.S. intelligence agencies, have the abilityContinue Reading

Hidden in Plain Sight: A statistical analysis of violence against children

UNICEF Report, September 2014: “Interpersonal violence – in all its forms – has a grave effect on children: Violence undermines children’s future potential; damages their physical, psychological and emotional well-being; and in many cases, ends their lives. The report sheds light on the prevalence of different forms of violence against children, with global figures andContinue Reading

The executive order that led to mass spying, as told by NSA alumni

Cyrus Farivar - Ars Technica: [Executive Order] 12333 is used to target foreigners abroad, and collection happens outside the US,” whistleblower John Tye, a former State Department official, told Ars recently. “My complaint is not that they’re using it to target Americans, my complaint is that the volume of incidental collection on US persons is unconstitutional.” The document, known inContinue Reading

Why Aren’t Women Advancing At Work? Ask a Transgender Person.

Jessica Nordell, New Republic: “Trans people are bringing entirely new ways of approaching the discussion. Because trans people are now staying in the same careers (and sometimes the very same jobs) after they change genders, they are uniquely qualified to discuss the difference between how men and women experience the workplace. Their experience is asContinue Reading

Drones at Home: Domestic Drone Legislation – A Survey, Analysis and Framework

Zoldi, Dawn M. K., Drones at Home: Domestic Drone Legislation — A Survey, Analysis and Framework (July 9, 2014). Available at for download SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2486259 “Can the government employ drones domestically without running roughshod over personal privacy? In an effort to preemptively rein in potential government overreach, most states have proposed legislation that restricts or forbidsContinue Reading

Investigative Report – NSA created ‘google-like search’ engine – shared access with other agencies

“Data available through ICREACH appears to be primarily derived from surveillance of foreigners’ communications, and planning documents show that it draws on a variety of different sources of data maintained by the NSA. Though one 2010 internal paper clearly calls it “the ICREACH database,” a U.S. official familiar with the system disputed that, telling The Intercept that while “itContinue Reading

European Facebook Users Privacy Lawsuit Moves Forward

EPIC: “A group of over 25,000 European Facebook users may proceed with their lawsuit against Facebook. The users, led by privacy activist Max Schrems, sued Facebook in a court in Vienna. The users charge Facebook with violating EU privacy law by improperly handling users’ data. Now that the court has approved the class action suit, Facebook must respond toContinue Reading

Unaccompanied Alien Children – Legal Issues: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

CRS – Unaccompanied Alien Children – Legal Issues: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions. Kate M. Manuel, Legislative Attorney; Michael John Garcia; Legislative Attorney. July 18, 2014. “Recent reports about the increasing number of alien minors apprehended at the U.S. border without a parent or legal guardian have prompted numerous questions about so-called unaccompanied alien children (UACs). Some of these questions pertain toContinue Reading

Security Experts: EPIC Correct About Body Scanners-Invasive and Ineffective

“The first independent analysis of backscatter x-ray body scanners corroborate the claims EPIC and others have made for several years: The scanners are invasive and ineffective. In a detailed report published in 2005, EPIC warned that the x-ray body scanners amounted to a virtual strip search and were an ineffective means of airport security. Freedom of Information Act documents later obtainedContinue Reading

Preliminary Draft of Proposed Amendments Federal Rules of Appellate, Bankruptcy, Civil, and Criminal Procedure

“On August 15, 2014, the public comment period opens for proposed amendments to: Appellate Rules 4, 5, 21, 25, 26, 27, 28.1, 29, 32, 35, and 40, and Forms 1, 5, 6, and New Form 7; Bankruptcy Rules 1010, 1011, 2002, 3002, 3002.1, 3007, 3012, 3015, 4003, 5009, 7001, 9006, and 9009, and New RuleContinue Reading

Criminal Justice Act: At 50 Years, a Landmark in the Right to Counsel

US Courts news release: “August 20, 1964—the President signed into law the Criminal Justice Act (CJA), which for the first time assured professional legal counsel in federal courts by paying an hourly fee for court appointed lawyers. Six years later, Congress established a full-time federal defender service within the judicial branch. Together, the measures created theContinue Reading