Civil Rights Law: What That Means for You
Constitutional amendments after the civil war abolished slavery making former slaves citizens of the United States of America. They also got the right to vote. However, some states in the South used some measures such as literacy tests and poll taxes to keep black citizens disenfranchised. These states also enforced the “Jim Crow” laws to segregate and discriminate.
Not a single civil rights act was passed for decades until 1957. In the year of 1957, a civil rights section of the Justice Department was established. On June 11, 1963, President John F. Kennedy addressed the nation about civil rights. This lead to the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
What is Civil Rights Law?
The Civil Rights Act of 1964, a landmark civil rights and labor law became effective on July 2, 1964 that eliminated color, race, religion, sex, or national origin based discrimination and segregation in public places. This law gives you the right to file a complaint if you believe that you have been discriminated against or segregated because of your color, race, gender, religion or nation of origin.
Civil Right Law encompasses basic human rights guaranteed to all American citizens by the Constitution of the United States of America. A civil rights attorney is an attorney who handles cases related to discrimination, social freedom, human rights and equality.
Some individuals, companies and agencies can illegally violate the civil rights of a citizen. Landlords or leasing offices, managers or supervisors at work, local, state and federal agencies, are some of the parties that commonly violate civil rights.
According to the Americans with Disability Act and the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, no employer can treat you unfairly because of your gender, race, ethnicity, age, disability, national origin or sexual orientation. If an employer makes a job-related decision based on your gender, religion, race, national origin or sexual orientation, this is a violation of civil rights law.
Similarly, while making a decision, a seller, leasing office or landlord cannot consider whether you belong to a protected class or not. Doing so is a violation of the Fair Housing Act.
Local, state and federal agencies also have to respect your civil rights. A victim of discrimination can hire a civil rights attorney for legal representation.
Types of Categories of Civil Rights Law
Civil rights law provides protection from different types of discrimination related to employment, housing and government agencies.
The following are the three most common types of civil rights cases:
Discrimination based on what you choose or do in private, or who you are is a violation of civil rights law. According to The Civil Rights Act of 1964, employment-related discrimination or segregation based on your color, race, sex, religion, or national origin is illegal. There are other Federal and States laws providing more protection to cover other factors such as sexual orientation, disability or age.
If an employer refuses to hire, fires, subjects you to a hostile work environment to drive you out or deprives you of growth (promotion) just because you belong to a particular section of the society, you can sue. You can approach one of the reputed civil lawsuit lawyers or civil rights law firms to file an employment discrimination lawsuit.
Landlords, sellers or leasing offices often discriminate against people in protected classes. They are either denied housing or driven out. However, the Fair Housing Act 1968 provides fair access to housing. This act has been extended to cover discrimination against families with children. Landlords can discriminate in some other ways which are not illegal. For example, a landlord might say that they do not have enough space to park your car. So, you should talk to a civil rights attorney before filing a complaint.
Discrimination by governments and the police is the most pernicious form of discrimination. False stops, arrests, and imprisonments, police shootings and there are several other events which make this an area of great concern. When the government agencies discriminate against you, you should talk to a civil rights lawyer to fight for your rights.
Why Do You Need a Civil Rights Lawyer?
If you are being deprived of your civil rights and freedoms, you can hire civil rights advocates to reclaim your rights and freedoms. A lawyer will provide important advice to address an issue legally and correctly. For example, in some cases of discrimination, you can file a complaint directly with the government. However, in some cases, an investigating agency determines whether a lawsuit can be filed or not. This is where the valuable advice and services of civil right law firms can help. In addition to this, civil lawsuit lawyers provide legal representation to help you in fighting for your rights.
Civil Rights Lawyers In California
In addition to federal laws, there are state laws in place to protect the civil rights of its citizens. It is important to choose an attorney well-versed in federal and California civil rights laws (Unruh Civil Rights Act). You can visit the website of civil lawsuit lawyers or civil rights law firms and fill out a form or make a call to discuss the case personally.