Equally American Blog

  • SCOTUS Puts Equality for Citizens in U.S. Territories on the Docket

    Earlier today the United States Supreme Court announced it will be reviewing a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit that unanimously found it unconstitutional to deny low-income elderly, blind and disabled residents of Puerto Rico the same access to federal support enjoyed by other Americans living in the states and certain other territories. In United States v. Vaello-Madero, decided by the First Circuit last year, the United States is seeking to recover $28,081 in Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments that Jose Luis Vaello-Madero, a low-income disabled American, received after moving from New York to Puerto Rico. Altogether, federal discrimination against residents of U.S. territories each year denies billions of dollars in critical support to the most vulnerable U.S. citizens in these areas. 

  • ABA Continues Supporting Equal Rights in U.S. Territories

    The American Bar Association has once again expressed its support for recognizing that U.S. citizens in the territories should be entitled to the same constitutional protections as U.S. citizens anywhere. Earlier today the ABA’s House of Delegates passed a resolution, proposed by the Virgin Islands Bar Association, that supports recognizing the full application of the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable search and seizure to people and goods traveling between the U.S. territories and other parts of the United States.

  • Equally American Urges SSI Parity

    On February 5, 2021, Equally American wrote to Chairman Richard E. Neal (D-Massachusetts) and Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-Texas) of the House Committee on Ways and Means to urge their support for including Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa in the Supplemental Security Income program.

  • Equally American Applauds Nomination of Deb Haaland for Secretary of the Interior

    On Friday, December 18, 2020, Equally American President and Founder Neil Weare issued the following statement in response to President-elect Joe Biden, Jr.’s choice of Congresswoman Deb Haaland (D-New Mexico) for Secretary of the Interior:

  • Justice Breyer to Speak at Event Honoring Judge Torruella, Critiquing Insular Cases

    U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer will be participating next week in an event hosted by the Yale Law Journal and the Federal Bar Association of Puerto Rico to honor Judge Juan Torruella, who passed away last month, and to highlight a collection of essays recently published about the Insular Cases and what comes next after the Supreme Court's recent ruling in Aurelius. The event is Monday, November 16, from 6-7:15pm ET, and is open to the public and press. 
  • Tenth Circuit Hears Argument on Birthright Citizenship in U.S. Territories

    Whether people born in U.S. territories have a constitutional right to U.S. citizenship will depend on how the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit rules following argument today in Fitisemanu v. United States.

 
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