Civil Rights and Social Justice

Join Us. Whatever your area of specialization, CRSJ has a place for you. The Section fulfills our role by: raising and addressing often complex and difficult civil rights and civil liberties issues in a changing and diverse society; and ensuring that protection of individual rights remains a focus of legal and policy decisions.

2021 CRSJ Fall Council Meeting

October 20-22 | Virtual

The ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice will hold its 2021 Fall Council Meeting virtually on October 20-22. During the first meeting of the 2021-22 Bar year, Section Chair Beth K. Whittenbury will address key civil rights and social justice issues during her Bar year, and the Section's role in addressing them. Please join the Section for the 2021 Fall Council Meeting for networking opportunities, a Resolution Workshop, business meetings, and more!

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September 10, 2021 Chair's Column

2021-22 ABA Civil Rights and Social Justice Section Chair Beth K. Whittenbury pens her second column of the new Bar year.

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Save the Date! - A Social Justice Policy Summit: A New Administration

December 8-9, 2021 | Summit

On December 8 and 9, the ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice Rights of Immigrants Committee–in strategic partnership with the ABA Coalition on Racial and Ethnic Justice–is hosting a policy summit designed to advance racial equity and social justice principles. Over the course of two days, the interdisciplinary conference will explore myriad manifestations of interpersonal, structural, and institutionalized discrimination to create enhanced awareness around these issues. The convening will also culminate in concrete community-driven policy recommendations to achieve positive social, political, and legal reform.

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The State of Criminal Justice 2021 - Capital Punishment

Longtime Section leader and Death Penalty Committee Co-chair Ron Tabak pens his annual chapter for the Criminal Justice Section's State of Criminal Justice publication. His insightful chapter includes dramatic developments that could lead to fundamental change in the death penalty’s future in the United States.

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Access, Asymmetries, and Eviction Diversion: The Eviction Crisis COVID-19 Forced America to Confront

On July 31, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 11-month nationwide eviction moratorium expired after its fourth extension, placing millions of Americans at risk of housing loss. Following widespread public pressure, the Biden administration ordered an additional moratorium on August 3. The Court’s 6-3 decision in Alabama Association of Realtors v. Department of Health and Human Services just 23 days later, however, overturned the moratorium as unconstitutional.

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Human Rights Magazine - New Issue Available!

Volume 46, No. 4

Public policy decisions in the past have been made that undermine public health safeguards and exacerbate longstanding inequities that place disenfranchised communities at increased risk of experiencing substantial harm. It is the responsibility of scientific and medical communities and lawmakers to address these past practices and work toward restoring faith in science.

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Voting Rights Toolkit

As a part of our multi-component voting rights initiative, CRSJ has created a Voting Rights Toolkit to provide technical assistance to you as you serve your community and our country in various ways. We have included information to help you identify election-related issues encountered by vulnerable populations and work toward solutions.

Dr. Clarence B. Jones Awarded 2021 Thurgood Marshall Award

About the Event

On August 6, the Section honored legendary civil rights leader Dr. Clarence B. Jones with the 2021 Thurgood Marshall Award in a virtual celebration during the ABA Annual Meeting. The 1-hour program features poignant remarks from multiple esteemed guests, including colleagues throughout Dr. Jones's lifetime, as they paid homage to the legend. The virtual event was a joyous moment for the civil rights legal community, with acclaim pouring in from the audience. President Barack Obama also shared his thoughts on the awardee, and told the audience to "embrace action over resignation.

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Thank you to our 2021 Sponsors

The Section deeply thanks each generous sponsor of the 2021 Thurgood Marshall Award Celebration for its support that enables the Section to advance its programs and publications and better serve our community of advocates nationwide working to protect civil rights and social justice.

CRSJ 101 – Monthly Membership Event

Attention new and interested CRSJ members! Join Section leaders and staff on Monday, October 4, at 3:00 p.m. ET for a 30-minute event to learn more about the ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice, our projects and initiatives, committee membership, and opportunities to get involved or get published! This event is open to all ABA members and non-members. This recurring membership orientation will occur on the first Monday of every month at 3:00 p.m. ET.


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Member Spotlights

We are proud to showcase the work and accomplishments of our esteemed members. Check out our spotlights of some of our more active members, and learn more about their work, goals, and achievements.

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Join Us

Whatever your area of specialization, CRSJ has a place for you. By joining us today, you can help ensure that the world’s largest voluntary professional association continues to uphold the Bill of Rights and the ideals it embodies.


Over the past five decades, the Section and its members have worked on hundreds of issues addressing a broad range of civil rights, civil liberties, and international human rights. Today, the Section continues to promote policies affecting religious freedom, LGBT rights, gender equity, and other significant civil rights issues. Your gift will help make our efforts possible for the next fifty years!