FAQs

What is the ACLU?
The American Civil Liberties Union was founded in 1920 and is our nation’s guardian of liberty.  The ACLU has xxx staff working in the courts, legislatures and communities across the country to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to all people in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States. 
 
What can I do if I feel my rights were violated?
Please let us know about your experience here.
 
What’s the difference between the ACLU and the ACLU of Washington?
The ACLU is a nationwide organization with headquarters in New York, a legislative office in Washington DC, and affiliate offices in every state. The ACLU of Washington is among the strongest affiliates in the country working to defend and extend civil liberties for everyone in our state. Read more about the history and work of the ACLU-WA
 
All gifts made to the ACLU from Washingtonians are shared between the national office and the ACLU of Washington. The national office coordinates our nationwide efforts and supports state affiliates across the country, particularly in states facing some of the most egregious civil liberties abuses, like Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas.
 
What is the difference between a membership and a donation?
The ACLU is made up of two corporations: the Union and Foundation. The Union does our political lobbying and advocacy work. ACLU membership dues fund the work of the Union. Since that work is political, membership dues and gifts designated to the Union are not tax-deductible.
 
The ACLU Foundation does our public education, outreach, and litigation. Donations to the Foundation are tax-deductible.
 
How is my gift/membership shared across the country?
All gifts made to the ACLU are shared between the national office and the state affiliate. In addition, some of the funding which goes to the national office helps sustain state affiliates that are least able to raise funds and are facing some of the most egregious civil liberties abuses such as Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas.
 
How can I become a member or donate to the ACLU?
You can become a member, renew your membership, or donate to the ACLU online, by calling (206) 624-2184, or by sending a check to:
 
Attn: Development Department
ACLU of Washington
901 Fifth Avenue #630
Seattle, WA  98164
 
If I make a tax-deductible donation does that make me a member?
No. The ACLU is made up of two separate corporations: the Foundation and the Union and both need your support! Tax-deductible donations fund the ACLU Foundation which does our public education, outreach, and litigation.
 
Membership fees fund the Union which does our political lobbying and advocacy work. Since that work is political, membership dues and gifts designated to the Union are not tax-deductible.
 
Is the ACLU a political organization?
While the ACLU works to change policy through lobbying, drafting legislation, and political advocacy, the ACLU remains non-partisan, working with both sides of the aisle to defend and extend civil liberties. The ACLU does not endorse candidates or political parties.
 
I recently joined the ACLU. When will I receive my membership card?
THANK YOU for becoming a member! It takes about 3 to 4 weeks to process a new membership. If more than 4 weeks have passed and you still have not received your card, please contact membership@aclu.org or call (212) 549-2585.
 
How can I make sure the ACLU does not share my name and mailing address with other charities?
If you would prefer that the ACLU not share your name or mailing address with other charities, please fill out our No-Exchange of Name Form.
 
Why do I get renewal and join mailings even though my membership is current?
The membership office sends out renewal notices before your membership expires to ensure there is no gap in your membership status. If you are concerned about notices you are receiving, please contact membership@aclu.org or call (212) 549-2585.
 
How do I update or correct my contact information with the ACLU membership office?
Please click here to fill out our change of address form in order to update or correct your mailing address, telephone number, and/or email address or call us at (212) 549-2585.
 
I get too much mail from the ACLU.  What can I do about that?
We want you to get only the information from us that you want. If you would like to be unsubscribed from our mailing lists or would like to change your email address or subscription preferences, please contact membership@aclu.org or call (212) 549-2585.