In 1965 Ann Fagan Ginger founded the Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute (MCLI) to provide advocacy and education regarding the enforcement of human rights in the United States. Ann led MCLI for nearly 50 years before stepping down as Executive Director. Now MCLI needs to transition by bringing in new leadership and sufficient funding for a small staff.
A successful leadership transition will ensure that the visionary human rights work of Ann Fagan Ginger and her many colleagues continues.
The mission of the Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute is to bring the United States into compliance with existing human rights and peace law. These human rights include the right to housing, a living income, education, due process of law, freedom of speech, and to be free from systemic racism, classism, homophobia, sexism, abelism, and other forms of discrimination. MCLI advocates in alliance with communities directly experiencing human rights violations.
MCLI was founded in 1965 by Ann Fagan Ginger, an attorney who successfully fought the infamous Red Scare in the 1950s. In 1964 she became a leader in the Free Speech Movement and founded MCLI as a resource for social movements expanding upon Alexander Meiklejohn's civil rights advocacy. For over 50 years Ann Fagan Ginger led MCLI as Executive Director expanding civil rights advocacy to include international human rights articulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and human rights treaties through education, reporting, and advocacy.
From 1945 to 2010, Ann Fagan Ginger and MCLI published the Human Rights and Peace Law Docket; the primary source available for human rights law. MCLI published numerous books on human rights, peace law, and social justice organizing. In 1986 MCLI led a successful campaign to create the Berkeley Peace and Justice Commission, and for 30 years MCLI worked to establish similar commissions around the country. In 1995, the Institute's Human Rights Reporting Project began using new U.S. treaties as tools to work for human rights. Since 2001 MCLI began publishing the quarterly newsletter "Human Rights Now!".
Recently, Ann Fagan Ginger stepped down as the Executive Director of the Meiklejohn Civil Liberties Institute. She continues as the intellectual force inspiring the next generation of leadership. MCLI's mission to build the leaders of tomorrow's movements centers around our tradition of training the next generation of organizers, advocates, and attorneys. MCLI now boasts over 400 intern alumni.
Today, MCLI is developing leadership from community organizers emerging from oppressed communities facilitating mentorship under the Law Office Study Program (LOSP), providing a tuition free alternative to law school. MCLI's current executive director Steven DeCaprio is an alumni of the LOSP and has been a social justice community organizer for over 20 years.