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ACLU v Tarek Ibn Ziyad Academy Prot Order Dispute

ACLU v Tarek Ibn Ziyad Academy Prot Order Dispute

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Published by Seth Leventhal

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Published by: Seth Leventhal on Jan 05, 2010
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07/07/2010

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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTDISTRICT OF MINNESOTAAMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNIONOF MINNESOTA,Plaintiff,vs.TAREK IBN ZIYAD ACADEMY, et al.Defendants.Court File No.: 09-cv-00138 (DWF/JJG)
T
HE
T
I
ZA
 
D
EFENDANTS
 
O
BJECTIONS TO
P
ROTECTIVE
O
RDER 
[D
OC
#
 
160]
 
P
URSUANT TO
L
OCAL
ULE
72.2(a)
 
RAL 
A
RGUMENT 
EQUESTED 
 
Defendants Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy, Asad Zaman, Asif Rahman, MahrousKandil, Mona Elnahrawy, Moira Fahey, and Mohamed Farid (collectively the TiZADefendants unless otherwise indicated) submit the following Objections to the ProtectiveOrder [Doc # 160]:
PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
In preparation for the Rule 16 Scheduling Conference of December 10, 2009, theparties submitted a Joint Rule 26 Report, including a proposed Protective Order. Theparties stipulated to all provisions of the proposed Protective Order, except as to thescope of 
the definition of “Confidential” i
nformation. At the Rule 16 Conference, theCourt accepted oral argument on this issue, but also directed the parties to simultaneouslysubmit Letter Briefs on December 21, 2009.
The TiZA Defendant’s Letter Brief 
[Doc #158] and proposed Protective Order (filed with the Court on December 21, 2009, andDecember 22, 2009, respectively) are hereby incorporated by reference.
Case 0:09-cv-00138-DWF-JJG Document 161 Filed 01/04/10 Page 1 of 8
 
2
As referenced above, the only item in dispute was the scope of what would bedefined as Confidential information
 – 
i.e., whether or not
all information disclosed by theTiZA Defendants
would be designated as Confidential. The TiZA Defendants sought thisprotection for good cause as result of repeated threats of brutal violence against TiZA andits teachers, students and staff. Despite these threats, the ACLU and CommissionerSeagren disagreed, stipulating only to inadequate protection for TiZA.On December 28, 2009, Magistrate Judge Graham issued the Protective Order[Doc. # 160].
The Order failed to incorporate the TiZA Defendants’ requested
protection, and instead directed each disclosing party to initially determine whatdisclosed information should be protected as confidential. (
See
Protective Order ¶ 1.)Further,
although stipulated 
by all parties in recognition of the public parties’ 
compulsory state law obligations
, the Court removed the Minnesota Government DataPractices Act (DPA) as a classification
of “Confidential”
information. (
See
ProtectiveOrder ¶ 1.) The Court further removed
a stipulated provision
permitting disclosure of information that is
“not public” under the DPA.
(
See
Protective Order ¶ 2.)Pursuant to Local Rule 72.2, the TiZA Defendants submit these timely Objectionsto the District Court.
OBJECTIONSI. Standard of Review
“The standard of review applicable to an appeal of a magistrate judge’s order on a
non-
dispositive issue is extremely deferential.”
 Dochniak v. Dominium Management Services, Inc.
, 240 F.R.D. 451, 452 (D. Minn. 2006) (
quoting
 
 Reko v. Creative
Case 0:09-cv-00138-DWF-JJG Document 161 Filed 01/04/10 Page 2 of 8
 
3
Promotions, Inc.
, 70 F.Supp.2d 1005, 1007 (D. Minn. 1999)). A court will reverse suchan order only if it is clearly erroneous or contrary to law. 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A); Fed.R. Civ. P. 72(a); D. Minn. LR 72.2(a).
“The
District Judge may also reconsider anymatter
sua sponte
.
D. Minn. LR 72.2(a).
 
II.
“Confidential”
Information Should Include All Information Disclosed by theTiZA Defendants for their Safety and Protection From Threats of Violence
The TiZA Defendants object to the limited the scope of 
“Confidential”
information in the Protective Order and request that
all
documents disclosed by the TiZADefendants be confidential for the safety and protection of TiZA students, families andstaff. The
Protective Order limits “Confidential” information to include:
[A]ny information within the ambit of Rule 26(c), including informationthat, if publicly disclosed, may cause undue annoyance, embarrassment, oroppression.
It may also include information classified as “educationrecords” under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA);
information identifying Islamic Relief donors or Islamic Relief employeeswho have no connection with TiZA or the Interested Organizations;information relating to Islamic Relief finances; information relating toTiZA students or parents of TiZA students who have no connection withthe Interested Organizations; and information relating to ACLU donors,ACLU finances, or ACLU employees.(Protective Order ¶ 1.)The TiZA Defendants submitted overwhelming evidence that
all
documents theydisclose should be cla
ssified as “Confidential” as a
result of the numerous and repeatedthreats of violence against TiZA students, families and staff, including death threats,bomb threats, and arson threats. At least one person threatened to start the school on fire
and “watch the children roast.” Another warned, “You are being watched.” And yetanother threat stated that “we will destroy you, your family and your country.”
 
Case 0:09-cv-00138-DWF-JJG Document 161 Filed 01/04/10 Page 3 of 8

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