Voting Rights

Voting is the cornerstone of our democracy and the fundamental right upon which all our civil liberties rest. The ACLU works to protect and expand Americansʼ freedom to vote.

Lansing Watchdog: Focus Shifts to Budgets, Bills in Capitol

Lansing Watchdog: Focus Shifts to Budgets, Bills in Capitol

2016-04-21 00:00:00

ACLU at the Michigan Capitol – April 21, 2016

In these weeks before the legislature breaks for summer campaign season, they will be focused on two goals: finalizing fiscal years 2017/2018 budget (a two year rolling budget) and getting publicity for a number of bills that they deem good for their political campaign in advance of the August primary.

Bi-Partisan FOIA Reform Bills Bring Seasonal Optimism to Lansing

Bi-Partisan FOIA Reform Bills Bring Seasonal Optimism to Lansing

2016-03-25 00:00:00

ACLU at the Michigan Capitol – March 25, 2016

A good thing happened in Lansing last week just in time for spring, ushering in the new season with an air of political optimism, and giving us a refreshing reprieve from pondering the emerging political landscape shaped by the presidential primary contests. Two committed Michigan lawmakers—from widely variant districts, with distinctly different views on political "touchstone" issues—showed Lansing how to work together.

Guyette: Continued Probes Crucial In the Wake of Flint Water Testimony

Guyette: Continued Probes Crucial In the Wake of Flint Water Testimony

2016-03-21 00:00:00

WASHINGTON—There was much partisan heat generated, but very little light shed, when Gov. Rick Snyder and U.S. EPA administrator Gina McCarthy appeared recently before a congressional committee to answer questions about their roles in the Flint water crisis.

Democrats on the House Oversight Committee vigorously hammered Snyder and Republicans skewered McCarthy last week as both heard calls for their resignations because a city of 100,000 people had its water supply contaminated with lead while under their watch.

Four Questions Gov. Snyder Must Answer During Congressional Testimony

Four Questions Gov. Snyder Must Answer During Congressional Testimony

2016-03-14 00:00:00

What we have come to learn about the Flint water crisis over the past several months—including the fact that a city of 100,000 people was left exposed to alarming levels of lead in its drinking water for nearly two years—has left our state reeling and our nation angry in disbelief.

But even more so, we—here at the ACLU of Michigan's Democracy Watch blog—aren’t just outraged by what we’ve uncovered through our investigations. We’re outraged by what we don’t yet know.

ACLU of Michigan Releases Documentary 'Here’sTo Flint' on Flint Water Crisis

ACLU of Michigan Releases Documentary 'Here’sTo Flint' on Flint Water Crisis

2016-03-08 00:00:00

DETROIT—As part of its ongoing look into the Flint water crisis, the ACLU of Michigan today released “Here’s To Flint,” a searing documentary that examines the origins of the disaster and the determined efforts of Flint residents, activists and researchers to learn the truth about the city’s lead-contaminated drinking water.

Authentic Progress in Michigan Means Embracing an Unaccepted--But Vital--Racial Justice Challenge

Authentic Progress in Michigan Means Embracing an Unaccepted--But Vital--Racial Justice Challenge

2016-03-04 00:00:00

Individuals who contribute to racial inequities and discrimination are not always motivated by purposeful racial hostility.

The ACLU of Michigan routinely urges police and school administrators to increase their awareness of implicit bias as one approach to reducing racial profiling and racially disproportionate school discipline. Implicit bias causes discriminatory acts when the actor has no conscious intent to discriminate.

Emergency Manager Law Challenged in Federal Court

Emergency Manager Law Challenged in Federal Court

2015-11-12 00:00:00

Public Act 436 gives unelected “emergency managers” sweeping, far-reaching powers to displace or in some cases even dissolve local governments and school districts. A coalition of civil rights groups challenged the law in federal court, and the state filed a motion to dismiss. In 2013 the ACLU of Michigan filed a friend-of-the-court brief explaining that under international law, the declaration of a state of emergency allowing the suspension of political rights is permissible only when there is an emergency that “threatens the life of the nation.” In other countries where that standard has

Pages

November 20, 2015
Rev. Edward Pinkney is a longtime community activist in Benton Harbor who has waged crusades against gentrification and what he regards as abuses of power by...
November 12, 2015
Public Act 436 gives unelected “emergency managers” sweeping, far-reaching powers to displace or in some cases even dissolve local governments and school...
March 17, 2015
Public Act 436 gives unelected “emergency managers” sweeping, far-reaching powers to displace or in some cases even dissolve local governments and school...
February 06, 2015 Right to Work, Open Meetings Act
Senior Judge and Detroit legend Damon Keith once wrote, “Democracy dies behind closed doors.” In an event that is believed to be unprecedented in Michigan...
September 17, 2014
Residents of Benton Harbor who claimed the city’s mayor was unresponsive to their needs circulated a petition to have him recalled from office. The county...
July 01, 2014
Inexplicably, when the Michigan legislature repealed the residency requirement for collecting petition signatures for voter initiatives and referenda, it left...
March 31, 2014
To place an initiative or referendum on the ballot in Michigan, advocacy groups must collect thousands of signatures using volunteers or paid professionals who...
May 29, 2013
In 2012 the Michigan legislature passed a bill that would have required voters to check a box affirming their United States citizenship before they can receive...
April 10, 2014
The ACLU maintains a presence in Lansing that enables us to pass policies that expand civil liberties or prevent the passage of policies that are hostile to...
The ACLU of Michigan has spent decades working to challenge regressive voting policies, protect the rights of college students and stand up to intimidating...
WASHINGTON—There was much partisan heat generated, but very little light shed, when Gov. Rick Snyder and U.S. EPA administrator Gina McCarthy appeared recently...
What we have come to learn about the Flint water crisis over the past several months—including the fact that a city of 100,000 people was left exposed to...
DETROIT—As part of its ongoing look into the Flint water crisis, the ACLU of Michigan today released “Here’s To Flint,” a searing documentary that examines the...
The ACLU of Michigan documentary “Here’s To Flint” is a searing examination of the origins of the Flint water crisis and the determined efforts of Flint...
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—ACLU of Michigan investigative reporter Curt Guyette has been named Michigan Journalist of the Year by the Michigan Press Association for...
UPDATE: DPS Emergency Manager Darnell Earley has announced that he will step down on Feb. 29. DETROIT—Reacting to news reports that the Environmental...
The State of Michigan attempted to cover up the fact that its own data revealed a significant spike in lead found in Flint children after the state forced the...
In a move characterized by critics as both overtly political and terribly damaging, the Board of Regents for Eastern Michigan University on Tuesday decided to...
Last December, regents for Eastern Michigan University put the Education Achievement Authority on notice, saying that a number of severe problems had to be...
The City of Flint took center stage Wednesday during a meeting of water experts considering proposed changes to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s “...
DETROIT – Residents of Flint, together with the ACLU of Michigan and the Natural Resources Defense Council, today announced their intention to sue state and...
The ongoing Flint water crisis generated headlines last week when the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a report warning that road work or...
September 24, 2015
Below are some of the thousands of Educational Achievement Authority emails (edited for length and clarity) obtained through a Freedom of Information Act...
September 13, 2015 Election
DETROIT – In an effort to inform young voters about their rights, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan and the NAACP have created an “how to” flier...
It took a while for LeeAnne Walters to realize the full impact of the number: 13,200. Walters—a stay-at home mom with four sons and a husband in the Navy—had...
In a place that bills itself the Great Lakes State, you'd think people would understand and appreciate the universally critical importance of water. But the...
April 10, 2015 Civil Rights Activist
Fifty years ago, Viola Gregg Liuzzo, a 39-year-old mother of five from Detroit, was shot dead by Ku Klux Klansmen on an isolated road outside Selma, Ala.  It...
October 30, 2014
DETROIT — The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan and a coalition of labor unions filed a motion late yesterday asking a court to rule that state...
May 23, 2014 Election
Update: The State of Michigan has backed off of an unconstitutional policy preventing sitting U.S. Representative John Conyers from being on the August ballot...
May 13, 2014 Election
DETROIT – The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan filed a federal lawsuit late yesterday arguing that Congressman John Conyers should not be tossed from...
March 05, 2014 Democracy Watch
Anyone at all familiar with Michigan’s emergency manager law knows that the people handed control of municipalities and school districts facing financial...
December 06, 2012
Lansing, Mich. – The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan expressed outrage today over the unconstitutional lockout at the Michigan State Capitol....
October 05, 2012 Immigrant Rights
DETROIT – In a ruling from the bench, a federal judge issued an injunction today against Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s controversial “citizenship checkbox...
September 17, 2012 Immigrant Rights
DETROIT – In a lawsuit filed today in federal court, a voting rights coalition is challenging Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s controversial “citizenship...
September 12, 2012 Racial Justice
DETROIT – In an effort to combat voter confusion, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan launched its Let Me Vote Campaign today designed to supply...
September 04, 2012 Immigrant Rights
DETROIT – In a letter today, the non-partisan Michigan Election Coalition urged the Secretary of State to immediately halt the use of the “citizenship checkbox...
October 08, 2010 Student Rights
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — The University of Michigan should uphold the free speech rights of students by allowing students to canvass for partisan issues in all...
June 25, 2010 Voting Rights
DETROIT – The state of Michigan has agreed to stop two voter-purge programs that unlawfully disfranchised thousands of Michigan voters in violation of federal...
October 14, 2009
DETROIT – The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan announced a settlement today in its lawsuit against Salem Township on behalf of two residents who were...
October 14, 2009
It never occurred to me to look up. London was an amazing city, but the weather was always a bit dreary. It was windy and it rained a lot, so I was usually...
January 29, 2009 Voting Rights
DETROIT – Today, Advancement Project, the American Civil Liberties Union and Pepper Hamilton LLP filed a motion on behalf of Lisa A. Blehm – a Michigan...
October 30, 2008 Voting Rights
CINCINNATI — The U.S. Appeals Court for the Sixth Circuit late Wednesday rejected Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land’s request to stay a lower court...
October 13, 2008 Voting Rights
DETROIT — In a major victory for voting rights, a judge today ruled that Michigan’s voter removal program violates federal law and ordered the state to stop...
October 07, 2008
DETROIT — The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan praised Bath Charter Township officials today for protecting their residents' constitutional right to...
September 30, 2008 Election
"Can I wear campaign gear into the polls?" "What if I don't have any photo ID?" "Are the rumors about foreclosure true?" Today marks five weeks before Election...
September 18, 2008 Voting Rights
DETROIT – Advancement Project, the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Michigan and the law firm of Pepper Hamilton LLP filed a federal lawsuit late...
July 31, 2008 Voting Rights
DETROIT – In an effort to educate all Michigan residents about recent changes in election law, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan sent a letter to...
March 26, 2008 Election
DETROIT – The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan applauded a federal judge’s ruling today barring the Michigan Secretary of State from providing the...
March 24, 2008 Free Speech
DETROIT — The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan filed a federal lawsuit today on behalf of two Salem Township residents who were removed from a Board...
February 27, 2008 Election
DETROIT – A federal judge today granted the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan’s petition for a preliminary injunction prohibiting the Secretary of...
January 11, 2008 Election
DETROIT — The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan announced today a federal lawsuit challenging the new primary law that requires the Michigan Secretary...
November 06, 2007 LGBT Rights
LANSING — At a Michigan Supreme Court hearing today, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan asked the court to reject the Michigan Court of Appeals...
February 24, 2006 Affirmative Action
DETROIT — Today the ACLU of Michigan filed a friend of the court brief in support of litigation asking the State Supreme Court to reverse a lower court opinion...
February 12, 2001 Student Rights
DETROIT — The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan and the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York agree that residents of the City of Detroit were...
February 24, 2000 Voting Rights
LANSING — Today, representatives from six university student assemblies announced the filing of a lawsuit to challenge Public Act 118 which requires that a...
If Your Rights Are Violated, call the ACLU  Michigan Voter Rights Polling Place Hours: Polling places are open from 7 a.m.-8 p.m. Application: At your...