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Lucy Parsons Labs 2023: Program Areas


posted by: lucyparsonslabs

Glitched banner with words “investigation, education, and litigation”.

Greetings and solidarity

From 2022 to today, LPL strives to sharpen its strategic approach in understanding and countering technologically-amplified carceral violence. From continued discussion, we’ve begun to consider our work as fitting into three, overlapping program areas: investigation, education, and litigation.


LPL systematically researches criminalizing technologies deployed by public and private bodies. With our expertise in public records requests, open-source intelligence gathering, and rigorous research, we expose carceral violence and governmental malfeasance as a tactic leading towards countering systemic injustice. We aim to deepen our research into expanded private uses of algorithmic tech increasingly preventing communities from accessing resources like housing, healthcare, and education.


Our educational programming allows us to share our research and develop deeper knowledge through a community-driven approach. We seek to build consciousness about the nature of policing and surveillance in Chicago, how digital tools and technologies amplify police violence, and encourage the growth of local organizing against such technologies. This frequently takes the form of public workshops, train-the-trainer events, and political education. Additionally, elected officials, journalists, and community groups regularly consult LPL to understand how the ubiquitous surveillance dragnet expands, and how it can be challenged and dismantled.


Through litigation, LPL challenges technologies that disproportionately violate the civil liberties and rights of Black and brown people. We have established a strong relationship with the civil rights law firms Loevy & Loevy and the MacArthur Justice Center, who support us in litigating cases to expose misconduct, negligence, and harm. We have participated in the filing of multiple amicus briefs with other Chicago-based organizations. We consistently submit public records requests related to policing and surveillance and force release of documents via litigation when necessary.

Adapting as we go

This framework meets our needs at the moment, but we also understand the need to iterate and adapt as time moves forward. We hope this brief introduction to the program areas helps clarify some of our approaches, and LPL will update accordingly as we continue to modify our strategies moving forward.

Con mucho amor,
Alejandro Ruizesparza
Co-Director, Lucy Parsons Labs

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