ACLU of the District of Columbia
The ACLU of the District of Columbia is the Washington, D.C. affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, a national nonprofit organization devoted to the protection of civil liberties and civil rights. Staff members in this affiliate defend the Bill of Rights in the District of Columbia through litigation, negotiation, lobbying, grass-roots organizing, and public education. The litigation docket includes approximately 80 active cases in local and federal courts. These cases primarily involve First Amendment issues, police practices, open government, rights of gays and lesbians and other minorities, privacy rights, rights of government employees, and due process rights in various contexts. Legislative concerns in the last few years in the D.C. Council have included police and criminal justice issues such as decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, revising the D.C. disorderly conduct statute, opposing civil anti-gang injunctions, reform of police treatment of demonstrators, prison crowding, sex-offender registration, civilian police review, double-blind witness identification procedures, the intersection of free speech and bullying prevention, governmental ethics, and issues surrounding emerging government surveillance techniques.