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Arkansas bill prohibiting local anti-discrimination ordinances becomes law
February 24, 2015
An Arkansas enacted a bill that prohibits cities and local governments from establishing ordinances with anti-discrimination codes became law Monday when Asa Hutchinson declined to veto it. Critics had called for a veto, as the legislation prohibits local governments from enacting laws to protect le....... [more]

Arkansas legislature passes bill that could allow increased LGBT discrimination
February 14, 2015
The Arkansas legislature on Friday passed a bill that would prohibit local governments from enacting laws to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) individuals from discrimination. The proposed purpose of the bill is to improve intrastate commerce by ensuring that businesses in the st....... [more]

Holt v. Hobbs and the Struggle over Religious Freedom
February 14, 2015
JURIST Guest Columnist Steven Smith, of the University of San Diego School of Law, discusses the significance surrounding the decision made in Holt v. Hobbs and our nation's commitment to religious freedom ...In Holt v. Hobbs, the US Supreme Court methodically applied the Religious Land Use and In....... [more]

Post-Windsor Decisions in the Federal Courts
February 7, 2015
In the wake of Windsor, there has been a series of challenges to various states' statutory and constitutional bans on same-sex marriage. When Windsor was decided, same-sex marriage had been legalized in only 12 states and the District of Columbia. Many of these states had passed legislation legali....... [more]

Supreme Court rules Muslim prisoner may grow beard
January 20, 2015
The US Supreme Court ruled unanimously Tuesday in Holt v. Hobbs that an Arkansas prison policy that bans Muslim prisoners from growing half-inch beards for religious beliefs is unconstitutional. The court held that prohibiting the growth of a religious beard violates the Religious Land Use and Insti....... [more]

Fifth Circuit hears arguments on same-sex marriage bans in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi
January 10, 2015
The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit heard oral arguments on Friday regarding the constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi. Federal courts overturned the same-sex marriage bans in Texas and Mississippi, while another federal court upheld Louisiana's ba....... [more]

Arkansas, Mississippi same-sex marriage bans struck down
November 26, 2014
Two federal judges on Tuesday struck down same-sex marriage bans in Arkansas and Mississippi. The rulings overturned the voter-approved bans that had been in place for over a decade. US District Judge Carlton Wayne Reeves of Jackson placed his decision declaring the ban a violation of the Fourteent....... [more]

Arkansas high court declares voter ID law unconstitutional
October 16, 2014
The Arkansas Supreme Court struck down the state's voter identification law on Wednesday, finding it unconstitutional. Act 592 required "proof of identity in the form of a voter-identification card or a document or identification card showing the voter's name and photo issued by the United States, t....... [more]

Congressional study: voter ID laws lower minority turnout
October 9, 2014
States that have toughened voter identification laws have experienced steeper drops in election turnout than those that have not, including disproportionate falloffs among black and younger voters, according to a nonpartisan congressional study released on Wednesday by the US Government Accountabili....... [more]

Supreme Court hears arguments on religious prison policy, jurisdiction
October 7, 2014
The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases Tuesday. In Holt v. Hobbs the court is considering whether an Arkansas prison policy that prohibits Muslim prisoners from growing a half-inch beard violates the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA). Current prison polic....... [more]

Arkansas court hears arguments for voter ID case
October 2, 2014
Oral arguments for a case challenging Arkansas' voter ID law began on Thursday, according to the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. The Brennan Center for Justice filed an amicus brief supporting the challengers. Act 595, passed in 2013 by the Arkansas legislature, re....... [more]




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