Despite the Humanist movement’s long history of using the courts to stand up for our rights, no Humanist group has ever had more than a handful of lawyers assisting with the process. To address this, and to ensure that our constitutional rights are represented in court, the American Humanist Association launched the Appignani Humanist Legal Center (AHLC) in 2006. Through amicus activity, litigation, and other legal advocacy, our team of cooperating lawyers, including Humanist luminaries such as Jim McCollum, Wendy Kaminer, and Michael Newdow, provides legal assistance to defend the constitutional rights of religious and secular minorities by directly challenging clear violations of the Establishment Clause and seeking equal rights for humanists, atheists and other freethinkers.
The Appignani Humanist Legal Center is always looking for qualified Humanist-minded attorneys to join our legal team in the fight to defend the separation of church and state and equal rights for humanists, atheists, and other freethinkers.
If you would like to join our list of cooperating pro-bono attorneys and lend whatever support you can to our cause, please contact us. We also welcome inquiries from law students who would like to apply for an internship with the legal center.
If you have encountered a violation of the separation of church and state or discrimination against humanists, atheists, or other freethinkers please contact us!
UPDATED January 27, 2014 – Read through the latest developments as the AHLC defends the rights of students to sit out the Pledge of Allegiance.
December 30, 2014 – Read the AHA’s complaint challenging a nativity scene on courthouse property.
December 9, 2014 – Read the letter challenging a Christian “purity” culture presentation in a Minnesota public school.
December 2, 2014 – Read the AHLC’s complaint against a Georgia school district’s promotion of Christianity.
November 26, 2014 – Read the AHLC’s complaint against the Ocala Police Department’s Establishment Clause violation.
January 15, 2015 – A California school district agrees to respect the right of students to opt out of the Pledge.
December 30, 3014 – County is unconstitutionally promoting and endorsing Christianity.
December 18, 2014 – The Appignani Humanist Legal Center defends the rights of elementary school students.
December 15, 2014 – A high school principal threatens students who sit out the Pledge; the school district says it won’t happen again.
December 9, 2014 – Thanks to a letter from the Appignani Humanist Legal Center, an atheist student may sit out the Pledge.