Each week, we run down the hot civil liberties stories in your Weekly Rights Review.
This week we cover counseling for LGBT high school students, the difference between a jail cell and a motel room, and the eternal question: who polices the police?
Counselors Must Care for LGBT Students
Topping your Weekly Rights Review, we supported Eastern Michigan University in declaring that those enrolled in counseling programs must treat LGBT clients. Seem common sense? We agree. “There is no place for discrimination when counseling people in need," said Kary L. Moss, our Executive Director. Between the Lines and AnnArbor.com are all over the story (here). Read our press release or check out our LGBT legal docket to learn more.
Pay-to-Stay In Jail?
A jail cell is a long way from a motel room, but Michigan counties may charge inmates up to $60 a day for their stay. We're concerned that at times those who can't pay risk returning to jail and being charged again -- keeping them trapped in the criminal justice system. The Detroit Free Press examines the economics of pay-to-stay plans in "Pay-to-Stay in Jail Raises Funds - And Questions." Learn more about the our work challenging the rise of modern-day debtor's prisons in our Poverty Docket (pdf).
Keeping an Eye on University Police
State Sen. Rebekah Warren (D-Ann Arbor) has weighed in on the ongoing controversy over the University of Michigan's policy banning people from campus, which we covered in last week's Rights Review. In an interview with AnnArbor.com (here), Sen. Warren said legislators may step in to strengthen a state law that monitors the conduct of campus police departments.
Another Step Towards Reforming the Patriot Act
This week the House declined to extend the Patriot Act until December, 2011. This is an important win for those of us who think that giving the government the power to treat all citizens like terrorists is somehow...un-American. The national ACLU's Blog of Rights has detailed coverage of Patriot Act reforms, including a handy tool to find out how your representative voted. Be sure to let them know that privacy is a priority we all share!