The ACLU of Northern California's Response to the COVID-19 Crisis

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The ACLU of Northern California stands in solidarity with our partners, members, and followers during this unprecedented public health crisis. We are monitoring the situation closely to ensure that the government mandated “shelter-in-place” restrictions are being enforced equitably, and that specific populations are not put in extreme risk over which they have no control. We are engaged and we are ready to challenge any indefensible abuse of power.

To that end, we are conducting advocacy around a number of issues.

The Shelter-in-Place Orders: The shelter-in-place orders that have been issued for the entire state of California are clearly an enormous and almost unprecedented curtailment of our individual civil liberties. Nonetheless, these measures have overwhelming support from local and national public health experts in support of our collective well-being. We have, however, done some advocacy around court closures and due process, and we are continuing to monitor the implications of closing federal offices for those in immigration proceedings.

Implementation of the Orders: We are monitoring outreach to us from the public for any concerns with implementation to ensure that these policies will not be implemented in disparate or discriminatory ways. While implementation will likely be spotty at first, we are paying close attention to see if any patterns emerge. At that time, we will assess the appropriate way to intervene.

Impacts on Vulnerable Communities: Aside from identifiable problems with enforcement, these policies, even if fairly enforced, are going to have the gravest effects on vulnerable communities. We have addressed many of these issues through joining coalition members in letters to various government actors asking that they consider and take action to protect these communities. These requests are likely to continue and will be closely tethered to the current COVID-19 crisis.

Criminal Justice

Gender, Sexuality, & Reproductive Justice

Immigrants' Rights

Racial & Economic Justice

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