What is the ACLU and what does it do?
The ACLU is a private, non-profit membership organization. Our mission is to preserve and protect the civil liberties and civil rights guaranteed by the U. S. and Arkansas Constitutions, especially the principles contained in the Bill of Rights.
Our legal work focuses on government actors, agencies, offices, laws, and policies that violate the Constitutional rights of Arkansans and civil rights violations by private actors.
Among the issues we work on are freedom of speech, freedom of religion, government-sponsored religious activities, privacy, discrimination based on race, ethnicity, gender, gender-identity, sexual orientation or disability, police misconduct, censorship in schools or libraries, students’ rights, workplace privacy, access to government documents, and other issues of fair treatment by the government. In general we do NOT assist in: criminal cases and appeals, wrongful convictions, divorce or child custody issues, wills, or complaints about lawyers.
We receive thousands of requests for assistance each year and are able to provide direct legal representation to a small number of clients each year. We do not provide emergency services or dispense general legal advice. We only give advice and services to those persons with whom we enter into a written agreement for representation. All requests for legal assistance must be submitted in writing. In-person interviews are generally not possible and we do not accept walk-ins.
Why must I write? How long does this take?
Due to our small staff, in-person and telephone interviews are generally not possible for initial requests for assistance. The ACLU will try to accommodate individuals who cannot write because of a disability. Having your request in writing enables us to more quickly process your request, as we can transmit your request to others as needed internally as well as to attorneys practicing in Arkansas who may be able to assist us with your request.
Our Legal Department reviews all of the complaints we receive each week, to determine if the requests raise issues for which we may be able to assist. We receive many complaints every week; every request is reviewed, but it may take some time. We will try to let you know within four weeks whether we can help you. This enables us time to collect any additional information or conduct research that may be needed and to evaluate our resources and capabilities at the time the request is made. If you have not heard from us within four weeks of submitting your request, you can safely assume that we are not in a position to be able to assist you with your request.
Please do not send original documents to us they will not be returned.
Don’t want to use the webpage?
1 - Fill out the online complaint form below and submit it to us online, or
2 - Print out the printable complaint form and mail the completed form to us, or
3 - Mail us a letter: ACLU of Arkansas- Intake, 904 West 2nd Street, Suite 1, Little Rock, AR 72201.