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LGBTQ Rights

Date Filed

January 28, 2015

After Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore urged the state’s governor and judges to defy federal law and enforce Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage in 2015, the Southern Poverty Law Center filed a series of judicial ethics complaint against Moore that could result in the chief justice being removed...

Economic Justice

Date Filed

October 19, 2015

The SPLC filed a judicial ethics complaint against Perry County (Alabama) Circuit Judge Marvin Wiggins after he required people unable to pay court fines to either donate blood or go to jail.

The complaint described how Wiggins threatened defendants in his court with jail on Sept. 17,...

Children's Rights

Date Filed

December 01, 2010

Students in Birmingham, Ala., schools were sprayed with pepper spray as punishment for routine offenses. The Southern Poverty Law Center filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of district students to end the practice and other abusive and unconstitutional behavior.

Children's Rights

Date Filed

July 08, 2010

Children at Sarah T. Reed Elementary School in New Orleans were subjected to unlawful arrest and excessive force – including handcuffing and shackling – for minor violations of school rules. The Southern Poverty Law Center filed a federal class action lawsuit on behalf of a first-grade student handcuffed and shackled to a chair by an armed security officer after the student argued with another youth. A settlement agreement resulted in the school district prohibiting the use of fixed restraints and limiting the use of handcuffs.

Economic Justice
Active Case

Date Filed

May 18, 2017

The money bail system in Randolph County, Alabama, violated the constitutional rights of people charged with misdemeanors or felonies because it created a “two-tiered” system of justice based on wealth. The Southern Poverty Law Center and its allies filed a federal class action lawsuit to end...

Children's Rights

Date Filed

April 13, 2004

At Columbia Training School, one of Mississippi's abusive juvenile prisons, a policy made it nearly impossible for injured children to speak with attorneys who are willing to help.

LGBTQ Rights

Date Filed

September 26, 2012

Brian Edwards and Tom Privitere were shocked to discover that an anti-gay hate group took their engagement photo and used it in political mailers to attack a Colorado lawmaker in 2012 for supporting same-sex civil unions. The SPLC and its allies filed a federal lawsuit against the group, Public Advocate of the United States, for misappropriating the likeness and personalities of the couple. It also charged that the group infringed on the photographer’s exclusive right to the photo.

Economic Justice
Active Case

Date Filed

November 19, 2018

Alabama unlawfully suspended the driver’s licenses of thousands of people unable to pay traffic tickets. The SPLC filed a federal lawsuit to stop the state from suspending licenses without considering a person’s ability to pay and finding that the person willfully failed to pay. It also sought...

Immigrant Justice
Active Case

Date Filed

December 18, 2019

The Trump administration has weaponized the immigration court system to serve its anti-immigrant agenda. Categorizing people fleeing persecution as “invaders,” the government is using the immigration courts to target the asylum system and vulnerable migrants instead of lawfully adjudicating the...

Children's Rights

Date Filed

July 12, 2018

Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission, an entity created every 20 years to revise the state’s laws, attempted to place a constitutional amendment on the state’s 2018 ballot that would have eliminated the duties of school boards to regulate public schools in their districts, including...

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