Prisoner Rights

Prisoners Excluded From Civil Rights Act

Prisoners Excluded From Civil Rights Act

2018-03-27 00:00:00

A civil rights lawsuit was filed in state court on behalf of young men who had been sent to adult prisons in Michigan when they were under the age of 18 and were sexually assaulted by adult male prisoners and female prison guards.  The state moved to dismiss the case, arguing that prisoners are not protected by Michigan’s civil rights law, known as the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA), because in 1999 the Michigan legislature amended ELCRA to specifically remove prisoners from the protections of that law. 

Religious Prisoners Deprived of Halal and Kosher Food

Religious Prisoners Deprived of Halal and Kosher Food

2018-08-21 00:00:00

In 2013, the ACLU of Michigan won a class action lawsuit against the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) on behalf of Muslim prisoners whose meals did not comply with the halal requirements of Islam.  Soon after this important religious freedom victory for Muslim inmates, we learned that MDOC had stopped ordering pre-packaged kosher meals for Jewish inmates.  Instead, it adopted a “one size fits all” vegan diet that it claimed met the religious requirements of all religions. 

ACLU of Michigan Calls for Federal Probe into “Pay-or-Stay” Sentencing After Death of Macomb County Jail Inmate

ACLU of Michigan Calls for Federal Probe into “Pay-or-Stay” Sentencing After Death of Macomb County Jail Inmate

2015-10-20 00:00:00

DETROIT—Concerned over potential civil-rights violations in the grisly death of Macomb County Jail inmate David Stojcevski, the ACLU of Michigan in a letter today urged US Department of Justice officials to investigate not only the fatality but also the unconstitutional “pay-or-stay” sentencing practices that landed Stojcevski in jail in the first place.

Kids Sentenced To Die in Prison

Kids Sentenced To Die in Prison

2018-08-14 00:00:00

The United States is the only country in the world that sentences juveniles to life in prison without the possibility of parole.  This inhumane practice is condemned throughout the world and is prohibited by international law. 

Yet, in Michigan, there are over 360 prisoners who were sentenced to life without parole for offenses committed before the age of 18, including some who were as young as 14.  These cases even include individuals who did not actually commit the homicide, but were convicted as an aider-and-abettor or under the “felony murder” doctrine. 

Mistreatment of Women at the Muskegon County Jail

Mistreatment of Women at the Muskegon County Jail

2017-07-24 00:00:00

At the Muskegon County Jail, male guards have routinely viewed naked or partially naked female inmates while they are showering, dressing, or using the toilet; the women have been denied feminine hygiene products, so that they bleed into their clothes; and female prisoners have rarely if ever been allowed any exercise outside of their cells. 

Challenging “Postcard-Only” Mail Policies

Challenging “Postcard-Only” Mail Policies

2017-05-17 00:00:00

In a disturbing new trend that has been sweeping the country, some jails are prohibiting inmates from sending or receiving any mail unless it is written on one side of a small postcard.  Although most jails say they are trying to prevent contraband, few have documented any serious contraband problems with the mail system because they are already allowed to open and search all envelopes and packages that enter or exit the jail. 

ACLU Pleased By Executive Order Announcing Commission to Fix Michigan's Public Defense System

ACLU Pleased By Executive Order Announcing Commission to Fix Michigan's Public Defense System

2011-10-14 00:00:00

The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan welcomes Governor Rick Snyder’s executive order establishing a commission to improve Michigan’s system for providing defense to poor people in criminal cases.

Pages

In 2013, the ACLU of Michigan won a class action lawsuit against the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) on behalf of Muslim prisoners whose meals did...
The United States is the only country in the world that sentences juveniles to life in prison without the possibility of parole.  This inhumane practice is...
June 01, 2018 Prisoner Rights
Sharee Miller, a prisoner at Huron Valley Women’s Prison, was fired from her job at the prison for seeking help for mentally ill women prisoners who were being...
March 27, 2018 Prisoner Rights
A civil rights lawsuit was filed in state court on behalf of young men who had been sent to adult prisons in Michigan when they were under the age of 18 and...
At the Muskegon County Jail, male guards have routinely viewed naked or partially naked female inmates while they are showering, dressing, or using the toilet...
June 26, 2017 LGBT Rights, Prisoner Rights
Josie Mills is a prisoner in the custody of the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC).  Although classified by MDOC as male, she has identified as female...
May 17, 2017 Prisoner Rights
In a disturbing new trend that has been sweeping the country, some jails are prohibiting inmates from sending or receiving any mail unless it is written on one...
September 23, 2016 Prisoner Rights
The Livingston County Jail has a postcard-only policy, but there is supposed to be an exception for legal mail. In 2014, the ACLU of Michigan wrote letters to...
August 19, 2006 Prisoner Rights
Detroit — In an American Civil Liberties Union case, a federal court today ruled that the Bush administration’s program to monitor the phone calls and e-mails...
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The United States is the only country in the world that sentences juveniles to life in prison without the possibility of parole.  This inhumane practice is...
DETROIT—Concerned over potential civil-rights violations in the grisly death of Macomb County Jail inmate David Stojcevski, the ACLU of Michigan in a letter...
October 14, 2011 Prisoner Rights
The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan welcomes Governor Rick Snyder’s executive order establishing a commission to improve Michigan’s system for...
December 01, 2010 Prisoner Rights
Detroit – The American Civil Liberties Union applauded a Michigan Supreme Court decision today allowing its lawsuit to proceed that seeks to fix Michigan’s...
May 17, 2010 Prisoner Rights
Detroit – In a landmark decision today, the Supreme Court ruled that it is unconstitutional for juvenile offenders who did not commit homicide to be sentenced...
January 25, 2007 Prisoner Rights
The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan lauded a federal judge’s ruling striking down a 2000 amendment to the state civil rights law that stripped...
March 29, 2005 Prisoner Rights
Detroit — The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan announced today that it will join in three lawsuits that have been filed against the Saginaw County...
February 10, 2004 Prisoner Rights
DETROIT – In a victory for women prisoners, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan announced today that a tentative settlement agreement was reached in...
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