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Correction: ACLU Bemidji Closing story

October 8, 2013
Associated Press

BEMIDJI, Minn. (AP) — In a story Oct. 6 about the closure of the American Civil Liberties Union's Bemidji office, The Associated Press, relying on information provided by the Bemidji Pioneer, reported erroneously that the office had worked to promote political candidates that supported racial justice. The newspaper says it erroneously paraphrased the Bemidji office's director. ACLU executive director Charles Samuelson said the ACLU is nonpartisan.

A corrected version of the story is below:

ACLU office in Bemidji to close Oct. 31

Budget cuts force ACLU office in Bemidji to close Oct. 31

BEMIDJI, Minn. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union plans to close its Bemidji office by the end of the month due to budget cutbacks.

The ACLU is tightening budgets across the state and all staff will be taking a pay cut, according to the Bemidji Pioneer (

During the past nine years, the office worked to reduce racial disparities faced by communities of color, notably the American Indian population, in Beltrami, Becker, Cass, Clearwater, Hubbard, Itasca and Mahnomen counties, as well as the Red Lake, White Earth and Leech Lake Nations.

The ACLU office in Bemidji was started in 2004 as part of the Greater Minnesota Racial Justice Project. It provides public education on issues of racial justice through community outreach, complaint intake and court monitoring.

Unlike many nonprofit organizations, the ACLU is not eligible for government grants. The project was supported by donations and member contributions.

The ACLU maintains it remains committed to fighting for racial justice in Minnesota both at the capitol and in the courts.



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