PEN America works tirelessly to defend free expression, support persecuted writers, and promote literary culture. Here are some of the latest ways PEN America is speaking out.

  • PEN America joined an amicus brief to support a federal lawsuit challenging the law that would ban TikTok across the United States in January 2025. The lawsuit argues that the ban, adopted this year by Congress and signed into law by President Joe Biden, violates the First Amendment. The Knight First Amendment Institute led the brief, which the advocacy group Free Press has also joined. “This act is exactly the kind of suppression of thought and ideas across borders that our organization was created to combat,” said Eileen Hershenov, deputy chief executive officer and counsel. 

  • At the 56th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, PEN America sponsored “Based on a True Story” with PEN International, the Permanent Mission of Poland to the UN in Geneva, and the Permanent Mission of Estonia to the UN in Geneva. At the event, PEN Eurasia Director Polina Sadovskaya spoke alongside writers and human rights defenders including Ma Thida, Iryna Kozikava, and Fatemeh Ekhtesari about the necessity of protecting writers at risk across the globe. 

  • PEN America called on the Israeli government to reject the Knesset bill that would allow communication minister Shlomo Karhi to shut down any foreign news network in Israel if it is perceived as a threat to the state. “This effort to silence voices that are critical of Israeli government decisions sets a dangerous precedent that not only compromises the watchdog role of the press, but also undermines democratic principles and the public’s right to be informed,” PEN America wrote in a statement. 

  • PEN America welcomed the Supreme Court’s rejection of Florida and Texas laws that intended to restrict the power of social media companies to engage in content moderation. All nine justices concurred on the decision to vacate and return the cases to the lower courts.

  • PEN America’s Artists at Risk Connection signed onto a letter organized by PEN Belarus to stop the extradition of Belarusian filmmaker Andrej Hniot from Serbia to Belarus, where he faces serious risks of torture and other forms of ill-treatment.

See previous PEN America updates