Ariana Aboulafia is the Policy Counsel for Disability Rights in Technology Policy, where she leads CDT’s work in studying the ways in which certain technologies, including hiring algorithms and other algorithmic systems, can impact disabled people, and advancing policy that protects their digital and civil rights.
An attorney with a strong background in intersectional and community-centered public interest advocacy, with particular expertise in disability, technology, criminal law, and the First Amendment. She was first introduced to technology while serving as a fellow to the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative, where her work included research to further their goal of combating online abuse and protecting civil rights in online spaces. Later, Ariana worked as an assistant public defender in Miami-Dade County, where she provided direct representation to clients facing both misdemeanor and felony criminal charges; she has also served as an officer to the Journalism program at the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, where her portfolio largely focused on safeguarding the First Amendment by providing legal services for journalists.
Ariana holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and law, history and culture from the University of Southern California, as well as a J.D. with a concentration in social justice and public interest from the University of Miami School of Law. Her academic works have been featured in several publications, including the University of Florida Journal of Law and Public Policy and the Connecticut Public Interest Law Journal, in topics ranging from consumer privacy and technology to hyper-viral police violence. She has presented research on the First Amendment at the Freedom of Expression Scholars Conference at Yale University, and her work on the criminalization of LGBTQ+ homelessness has been honored by the National LGBTQ+ Bar Association.