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Jay Kaplan

About Jay Kaplan

Jay Kaplan is a staff attorney at the ACLU of Michigan. You can reach him at jkaplan@aclumich.org.

How the Trump ‘Medical Conscience’ Rule is Harming LGBTQ Liberty

In November a federal district judge in New York found that the Trump Administration lied. The Court also held that the Administration had overstepped its authority. Let me explain. In May 2019 the Administration issued its “Medical Conscience” rule. We’ve had medical conscience rules in the past that have protected health care employees who refuse to participate in performing abortions, sterilizations and assisted suicides, based on their sincerely held religious beliefs.

By |2020-01-07T16:22:36-05:00January 7th, 2020|Opinions, Viewpoints|

Fighting for Our Rights 50 Years Post Stonewall

June 28, 1969. With no civil rights protections available for LGBTQ people and rampant harassment and brutality by law enforcement against our community and LGBTQ establishments, a group of brave men and women — including two transgender women of color, Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson — stood up to the New City Police Department and determined that they were not going to take it anymore.

By |2019-06-12T15:31:42-04:00June 12th, 2019|Opinions, Viewpoints|

Adoption Case Settlement Win for LGBTQ Michiganders

This past Friday came the announcement that the ACLU of Michigan and the state of Michigan settled a lawsuit that we, the ACLU, had filed — challenging the state’s practice of allowing state-contracted, taxpayer-funded foster care and adoption agencies to use religious criteria to exclude same-sex couples.

By |2019-03-28T02:17:05-04:00March 28th, 2019|Opinions, Viewpoints|

The Transgender Community will not Be Erased

It’s been a challenging week this week for members of the transgender community, their allies and supporters. Over the weekend, the New York Times revealed that officials within the Trump Administration are pushing for a narrow definition of sex in enforcing federal civil rights laws. By defining sex as “either male or female, immutable and determined by a person’s genitals at the time of birth,” governmental departments could refuse to recognize and address incidents of discrimination against transgender people in employment, education, housing and access to health care.

By |2018-10-31T14:40:47-04:00October 31st, 2018|Opinions, Viewpoints|

Supreme Court Cakeshop Ruling Does Not Provide License to Discriminate

Some are misinterpreting last week’s Supreme Court’s decision in the Masterpiece Cake case, as providing a license to discriminate against LGBTQ people. This is patently false. The Court’s ruling in favor of the cake shop was based on very narrow and specific circumstances regarding respecting religious freedom while enforcing antidiscrimination laws.

By |2018-06-13T12:43:28-04:00June 13th, 2018|Opinions, Viewpoints|

Unanimous Vote in Favor of Michigan Transgender Woman is Groundbreaking

A landmark legal decision for transgender rights was issued last week. A unanimous three-judge panel of the federal Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals — covering Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee — ruled that Michigan RG & GR Harris Funeral Homes violated federal civil rights laws when they fired Aimee Stephens for a being a transgender woman.

By |2018-03-14T13:51:05-04:00March 14th, 2018|Opinions, Viewpoints|