In March 2018, a Philadelphia Inquirer reporter alerted the City’s Department of Human Services (“Department”) that two of the foster care agencies with which it contracts – including Catholic Social Services (“CSS”) – refused to work with same-sex foster parents.  The Department promptly conducted an investigation and, upon confirming that CSS refused to work with

This year saw perhaps the largest public protests in American history, one of the most contentious election years, vast public use of social media to achieve political and social goals, and harsh debate on whether government mandates designed to combat the pandemic infringe constitutional rights, including the right to free expression.  Free speech challenges rose

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away from complications from pancreatic cancer on Friday, September 18, 2020.  Justice Ginsburg inspired millions and became a beloved icon in a way that is truly uncommon for a jurist.  She was the subject of a documentary, a biopic, and an opera.   She earned wide acclaim for her

Residency requirements for public employees is a long-standing concept that has been experiencing a resurgence. In the 1970s, numerous legal challenges were brought against municipalities that required employees to reside in the city or county where they were employed. In 1972, the California Supreme Court found the City of Torrance residency requirement was unconstitutional. In

This blog was authored by Alysha Stein-Manes.

April 1, 2020, is national Census Day and will kick off a year-long process of counting every resident in the United States.  In California, the California Citizens Redistricting Commission (the “Commission”), a non-partisan commission comprised of democratic, republican and independent (decline-to-state or no party preference) voters, is

This post was authored by Paul Knothe.

On February 20, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Timbs v. Indiana, holding for the first time that the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution’s prohibition of excessive fines applies to civil forfeiture by state law enforcement agencies.  It did not, however, decide how large a forfeiture

This post was authored by Lisa S. Charbonneau.

Under Article XI, Sections 4 and 5 of the California Constitution, charter cities and counties have exclusive authority to regulate and determine their own municipal affairs, free from intrusion by the state.  These provisions of the Constitution are collectively referred to as the municipal affairs clause

Last year, California voters passed Proposition 64 (“Prop 64”), making the recreational use and sale of marijuana generally permissible under California law.  Specifically, Prop 64 legalizes the use of marijuana for non-medical reasons by adults age 21 and over.  While Prop 64 made the use of recreational marijuana legal under state law as of

This post was authored by Amit Katzir

Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to review Janus v. AFSCME, a case out of Illinois challenging the constitutionality of mandatory agency shop fees for public employees.  Illinois, like California, is one of several states where agency shop arrangements are authorized in the public sector.

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