Last Monday, we brought a major lawsuit against President Biden on behalf of Palestinians in the U.S. and Gaza for failure to prevent – and complicity in – the Israeli government's unfolding genocide of Palestinians in Gaza. We followed up on Thursday with an emergency motion seeking a preliminary injunction that, while the broader case is being consider, would immediately halt U.S. military and diplomatic support for the State of Israel as it carries out its assault and siege on Gaza.
The declarations filed by the plaintiffs in Gaza offer a glimpse into the layers of loss that each family has endured. Ahmed Abu Artema describes the heartbreaking reason his family was gathering in the first place when the airstrike that hit his father’s home killed his son, injured him and his two other children, and killed five other relatives including his 85-year-old Aunt Fatema. They had gathered to offer condolences to Fatema, who herself had lost four grandchildren and a son in two different strikes since October 7th.
Leading genocide and Holocaust experts also submitted powerful declarations in support of the case.
Read the full press release on the emergency motion and declarations on our website. You can also watch recordings of both the press conference and our Power Hour event on the case for allies on our Facebook page.
United States at critical juncture in fight against systemic racism, including death by incarceration, says UN expert
Last week, the United Nations special rapporteur on racism issued a powerful statement: the United States makes it way too easy for people to receive death-by-incarceration prison sentences, especially Black and Latinx people and women who are criminalized in the context of domestic violence. "Without the chance of parole," the statement said, the prison system negates any stated purpose of rehabilitation, "reducing it to a tool of segregation and exploitation."
The finding comes on the heels of a recent delegation to Geneva, Switzerland, where nearly two dozen advocates and attorneys, the majority directly impacted by death-by-incarceration sentencing (DBI), demanded the UN Human Rights Committee recognize these sentencing schemes as cruel and inhuman, amounting to torture and racial discrimination in violation of international human rights laws. The Committee agreed, calling on the United States for the first time to consider a moratorium on all life-without-parole (LWOP) sentences. They also emphasized for the first time the importance of parole eligibility for all incarcerated individuals, irrespective of age or the crime committed.
Read the full press release on our website.
We are so excited to welcome Sunyata Altenor as our new Communications Director! Sunyata will direct the overall communications strategy for the organization. Prior to coming to the Center for Constitutional Rights, Sunyata worked as a communications strategist in the labor, human rights, and reproductive justice movements in the U.S. and throughout Latin America/Caribbean.
An award-winning writer and graphic designer, Sunyata has a long history of grassroots organizing and training for communities who have traditionally been denied access to broadcast media. Sunyata's writing has appeared in multiple publications and major TV networks including The Washington Post, The New York Times, CNN, CBS, ABC, The Boston Globe, and The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Last week, on November 14, 2023, we joined with other members of the Federal Anti-Solitary Taskforce to lead 28 meetings with U.S. senators and representatives asking for their support of the End Solitary Confinement Act. There was also a virtual rally attended by over 100 people, featuring speeches from Representative Cori Bush, Representative Sydney Kamlager-Dove, advocates, and solitary survivors, including our client in Ortiz v. Orange County, NY, Luis Gonzalez Carbajal. You can view the video of the rally online.
We seek experienced second- or third-year law students or LLM students with a strong commitment to social justice to provide legal research and analysis as part of a semester-long paid internship or externship. The intern will spend 12-20 hours per week between January and May 2024 assisting attorneys on projects.
Our work includes issues related to policing; prisoners’ rights; immigration; racial justice; Indigenous rights; environmental justice; gender justice and LGBTQIA+ rights; national security; corporate accountability; torture; detention; suppression of dissent; anti-militarism; international solidarity; violations under the Alien Tort Statute, the Torture Victim Protection Act, and universal jurisdiction; and related work local to the Southern United States.
Qualified candidates should prepare a resume, cover letter, brief legal writing sample, and list of three references as one PDF document, with your name in the document title, prior to applying via our application web form. Learn more about this position on our website. Apply by November 24, 2023.