Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law

"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those  
            who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little."       
- Franklin D. Roosevelt                            
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      Major Projects and Initiatives 

Approximately 80,000 inmates are held in some form of solitary confinement (SHU, ASU, Ad-Seg, Control Unit) across 44 States. 11,000 of these inmates are held in California State prisons, the vast majority of them are people of color.

On March 20, 2012, approximately 400 California prisoners in segregation joined by 15 organizations represented by the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law petitioned the United Nations (UN) to conduct an investigation of the conditions of the prisoner's confinement and issue a decision on whether these conditions violate international law, including the UN Convention Against Torture. The petitions have been submitted to the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.

Click on the image to enter the CA Prisoners Case page for detailed information regarding solitary confinement, the UN petitions, the hunger strikes, and any updates on our progress.

The Center for Human Rights & Constitutional Law, the Public Law Center, the Asian Law Alliance, and the Law Offices of Manulkin & Bennett filed suit on behalf of Irma Rodriguez, a U.S. citizen, Jane DeLeon, Irma's immigrant spouse, and Martin Aranas, Jane's son, challenging application of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to deny immigration benefits to same-sex spouses. Visit our DOMA page for updated information on the rights of bi-national same-sex married couples. Visit our Support Services Page to download a legal services manual on the rights of LGBT immigrants.


Click on the image to enter the DeLeon Lawsuit page and to get detailed information on our lawsuit, DOMA, and the story of Irma Rodriguez and Jane DeLeon.

 Casa Libre 

The Casa Libre/Freedom Home is a licensed emergency and long-term shelter for minors under the age of 18 without homes, including unaccompanied immigrant and refugee children. This project is operated by the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, Inc., a sister program of the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law Foundation, the entity that engages in legal advocacy and major litigation on behalf of vulnerable and marginalized individuals and groups.

The program offers a range of services, including case management, educational testing and placement, referrals to no-cost health care providers, drug and alcohol prevention programs, family reunification services, living skills and leadership workshops, free legal and immigration services, and cultural activities. The program focuses on Los Angeles inner-city homeless children, and has a history of providing services to immigrant and refugee children, including unaccompanied minors.


Click on the image to enter the Casa Libre website and get detailed information about the history,  the house, and the services provided.

 Voces Unidas

The Voces Unidas project has compiled a nationwide resource database of free or low cost social and legal services for women and children suffering from domestic abuse. The resource database is available through this website free of charge to legal services providers, pro bono lawyers, community-based organizations, and individual advocates.


Click on the image to enter the Voces Unidas website to access collected information on domestic abuse.

The Legalization Site

This website is a portal for access to a wide range of information including news, studies, reports, policies, laws, pending legislation, and litigation regarding amnesty and legalization programs for undocumented immigrants.

This site is also intended to serve as a tool for networking among legal services providers, immigration scholars, community-based immigration advocates, and immigrants themselves. Institutions, legal services providers, advocates, and individuals involved in issues relating to amnesty and legalization for undocumented immigrants, whether in the private, non-profit, or government sectors, are invited to contribute materials to this site.

Click on the image to enter the Legalization website to access collected information on immigration.

Unaccompanied Immigrant Minors Project

The Unaccompanied Minors Project seeks to address both policy issues relating to the treatment of unaccompanied migrant children, as well as mechanisms for the delivery of direct non-governmental community-based services to such children.

Initially the focus of this work is on migrant children who have left their countries in order to enter the United States, or who have already entered the United States. As additional information is gathered from institutions and advocates outside of the United States working on behalf of unaccompanied migrant children, the scope of the project may expand to include issues in other countries, particularly in Central and South America.


Click on the image to enter the Unaccompanied Minors Project website to access collected information on unaccompanied migrant children.

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