Month: September 2018

“Can I Vote?” Flowcharts to Help You Understand Voting Rights

The Washington State office of the ACLU has posted helpful “Can I Vote?” flowcharts to help people with criminal convictions figure out if they are eligible to vote.  The flowcharts are written in seven languages–English, Chinese, Korean, Oromo, Spanish, Somali and Vietnamese.  A person convicted as an adult of a felony in Washington State loses their right to vote and is also ineligible if they are serving a sentence for any felony conviction from another State or federal court.  The right to vote is automatically restored once the person is no longer under the supervision of the Washington State Department of Corrections.  Read the English language version of the “Can I Vote?” flowchart here.

New Washington State Service Animals Law Takes Effect on 1/1/2019

This past session, the Washington State Legislature passed SHB 2822, Chapter 176 of the Laws of 2018, to address growing problems with people misrepresenting ordinary animals as service animals.  In addition to changing the definition of “service animal”, the new law also creates a civil penalty for misrepresentation of a service animal of up to $500.  WashingtonLawHelp has published a guide related to this new law here.

K & L Gates Creates Pro Bono Cyber Civil Rights Legal Project

K & L Gates has founded a pro bono project to help victims of “revenge porn” or nonconsensual pornography defend their “cyber” civil rights.  Assistance is available to victims both within the United States and abroad.  To contact the Cyber Civil Rights Project and K & L Gates, use this link.  For more information about cyber civil rights, see the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative’s web site.

Sociologist Says Public Libraries are the Bedrock of a Civil Society

The disconnect between the perceived value of public libraries–particularly in the eyes of influencial policy-makers–and the vital role they play in supporting the social infrastructure of a civil society is real.  And it’s something that anyone concerned about equity, open access, and diversity should be prepared to confront.  So says sociologist Eric Klinenberg, in his recent New York Times opinion article, To Restore Civil Society, Start With the Library.

For more information about the recanted Forbes article about the value of public libraries, see this QZ article.