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Legal News
23 Nov 2015
by Alexis Wheeler

A UN human rights expert on Monday advised [press release] Nigerian officials to halt mass, unlawful evictions and demolitions in the region of Badia, Lagos, exoressing concern over the homelessness resulting from a lack of adequate housing and compensation to victims. Special Rapporteur Leilani Farha [profile], an expert on the … [read more]

Legal News
23 Oct 2015
by Alexandra Farone

[JURIST] Governments must commit themselves to further action to globally improve housing conditions and urban development, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to housing Leilani Farha [official profile] said [press release] Thursday. Farha made the statement as she was discussing her latest report [text, PDF] on the implementation of a … [read more]

Legal News
25 Aug 2015
by Steven Wildberger

[JURIST] UN Humanitarian Coordinator and Deputy Special Representative for the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (CAR) [BBC backgrounder] Aurélien A. Agbénonci [UN profile, in French] on Monday strongly condemned [press release, PDF] an August 20 attack on humanitarian workers in the CAR city of Bambari. In … [read more]

Legal News
15 Aug 2015
by Ashley Hogan

[JURIST] Last week the US Department of Justice [official website] challenged [complaint, PDF] the constitutionality of a Boise, Idaho city ordinance that criminalizes sleeping in public places by the homeless. The federal government's argument [Washington Post report] relies on the fact that everyone needs to sleep and by criminalizing the … [read more]

Legal News
11 Aug 2015
by Steven Wildberger

[JURIST] Despite widespread irregularity and violence, Haiti on Sunday held its first parliamentary election in four years. Haiti's parliament [official website, in French] dissolved in January following canceled elections in 2011 and 2014. Around 50 of 1,500 voting centers were affected by violence [AP report] or bureaucratic problems, ranging from … [read more]

Legal News
3 Mar 2015
by Alexandra Farone

[JURIST] The California Supreme Court [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] unanimously Monday that restrictions on where sex offenders may live violates the parolees' constitutional rights. This decision addresses Jessica's Law [Proposition 83, materials], the voter initiative passed in 2006 that banned sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of where … [read more]

Legal News
28 Jan 2015
by Jacqueline Jones

[JURIST] A group of UN human rights experts on Wednesday welcomed a decision [press release] by the government of the Netherlands to offer aid to municipalities that provide emergency shelter to homeless migrants. The UN experts described the decision as a welcome change from the Netherlands' refusal to support those … [read more]

Legal News
9 Jan 2015
by Colleen Mallick

[JURIST] Tens of thousands of people who lost everything in the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti are still homeless as a result of government policy failures, forced evictions and failed short-term relief solutions, Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] reported [report, PDF; press release] Thursday. According to the report, the influx … [read more]

Legal News
21 Jun 2014
by William Helbling

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] on Thursday struck down [opinion, PDF] a 31-year-old Los Angeles law which prohibits people from living out of their vehicles. Prior to the decision from the federal appeals court, the act of using a vehicle "as living quarters … [read more]

Professional Commentary
14 Mar 2014
by Zachary Heiden of American Civil Liberties Union of Maine
edited by Stephen Krug

JURIST Guest Columnist Zachary L. Heiden, Legal Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine, says that the Portland, Maine ordinance banning anyone from standing, sitting or loitering in any median strip is a content-based restriction that fails to comply with the First Amendment...In Cutting v. City of Portland … [read more]

Legal News
16 Oct 2013
by Matthew Pomy

[JURIST] A Budapest prosecutor on Wednesday charged Bela Biszku, former leader of the Hungarian Socialist Workers' Party (MSZMP) [party website, in Hungarian], with war crimes. The charges stem from when Biszku was a member of the party's Temporary Executive Committee after the failed revolution in 1956 [BBC backgrounder]. The committee … [read more]

Legal News
1 Oct 2013
by Cynthia Miley

[JURIST] The Hungarian Parliament [official website] on Monday passed a law that allows municipalities to prohibit sleeping in public places, effectively criminalizing homelessness. The law permits [AFP report] local authorities to declare areas prohibited for homeless people and evict those living in huts or shacks near the city. Punishment for … [read more]

Student Commentary
28 Sep 2013

JURIST Guest Columnist Ginger Grimes, University of California, Irvine School of Law Class of 2015, discusses the recent announcement by the Department of Justice regarding veteran same-sex couples benefits and advocates that the place of celebration rule should be adopted...Last month, a federal district court in California struck down [PDF] … [read more]

Legal News
18 Sep 2013
by Samuel Franklin

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] expressed concern on Wednesday over recent changes to the Hungarian constitution, highlighting a lack of resolve over issues surrounding weakened human rights protections in the country. After voting to adopt the amendments on Monday, HRW called the changes "largely cosmetic," accusing [press release] … [read more]

Legal News
30 Aug 2013
by Kimberly Bennett

[JURIST] State secretary at the Justice Ministry of Hungary Robert Repassy announced on Thursday that the government is proposing new constitutional amendments to reduce criticism over its 2012 constitutional amendments [BBC backgrounder]. Repassy stated that the amendments would contain [AP report] new rules on the recognition of religious groups, as … [read more]

Legal News
15 Aug 2013
by Endia Vereen

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] Wednesday that the Michigan law criminalizing begging is unconstitutional because it violates free speech rights. A person convicted under the Depression-era law is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 90 … [read more]

20 Jul 2013
by Zachariah Rivenbark

Today, there are 32 states in the US that require voters to present identification at the polls in order to vote, including 17 states that have passed laws requiring a photo ID. Voter ID laws have become increasingly controversial as the 2012 presidential election approaches, precipitating legal challenges in several … [read more]

Legal News
19 Jun 2013
by Theresa Donovan

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official website] on Tuesday urged [press release] the Hungarian government to revoke constitutional amendments that have recently come under fire for undermining the country's constitutional justice and for threatening the independence of the country's judiciary. Pillay's call to the Hungarian government … [read more]

Legal News
15 Jun 2013
by Samuel Franklin

[JURIST] The Venice Commission [official website], a European rights commission, published a report [text, PDF] on Friday criticizing Hungary's recent amendments to its constitution. While the commission praised Hungary's efforts to strengthen it's rule of law, the report cited several concerns with the new constitution. The report criticized provisions of … [read more]

Legal News
29 May 2013
by Alison Sacriponte

[JURIST] The UN special rapporteur for extreme poverty and human rights Magdalena Sepulveda [official profile] on Tuesday presented [press release] her annual report [materials] to the UN Human Rights Council. Sepulveda urged world governments to enable participation amongst persons living in poverty in decisions that affect their lives. She also … [read more]

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