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Full equality and full application of the principles of the 1964 Civil Rights Act still elude many groups. Some have obtained protection through the passage of separate specific legislation, often patterned on the Act. Others still seek relief under the plain words of the Act, but have yet to succeed. In either case, we have work to do to realize the full promise of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. This issue of Human Rights suggests some areas for future action.
This year’s fiftieth anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education ought to occasion untold praise for the courageous plaintiffs, attorneys, and jurists who helped bring about a momentous reformation of American law. Instead, anniversary celebrations and symposia have been rife with declarations that deprecate, disparage, dismiss, and otherwise dump on Brown.
The Section of Individual Rights and Responsibilities (IR&R) is considering preparation of a sourcebook on attorneys’ fees under the 1964 Civil Rights Act and its progeny. This sourcebook would be a valuable resource for practitioners. Many lawyers who handle civil rights cases take them pro bono, venturing outside their usual practice areas to do so. Some lawyers and law firms often donate court-awarded legal fees to legal service organizations or other charitable organizations. Other lawyers can take the cases only if there is a prospect of a fee award. In these and other circumstances, the Section’s project will help improve access to justice.
Forty years after the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, it is hard to understand and even remember the furious battle over the passage of that law. Today, in 2004, with more than a third of the nation made up of African Americans, Hispanics, and Asians, it seems as if the impassioned filibuster in Congress took place in a different century and maybe on a distant galaxy.
The ADA not only rivals the 1964 Civil Rights Act (Act) in importance, but draws substantially from the structure of that landmark legislation as well, while extending its antidiscrimination protection to a new class of individuals: people with disabilities.
Forty years after the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, there is still no explicit federal protection for LGBT employees. In at least some circumstances, however, courts are increasingly finding that LGBT employees are entitled to protection under Title VII.
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Act) opened public facilities, public accommodations, education, jobs, and voting booths to more Americans by making it illegal to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, and national origin. Women, however, were glaringly absent.
Forty years ago, the U.S. Congress enacted the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Act) to promote equal treatment for all people in our society. However, recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions have undermined Congress’s intent that the 1964 Act and other federal laws provide full and effective protection against all forms of discrimination throughout our nation. Therefore, on February 11, 2004, a coalition of Democratic legislators introduced a bill in both Houses of Congress to reverse these damaging decisions and strengthen key civil rights laws.
If there is one person whose life exemplifies the fight for civil rights in the United States, it is Martin Luther King Jr. If there is one person whose life continues his fight, it is Coretta Scott King, Dr. King’s wife and partner, whom we honor in this issue as a Human Rights Hero.