The Leadership Conference is working diligently to see that Tom Perez is confirmed as U.S. Secretary of Labor. Perez is an eminently qualified public servant and consensus builder who has dedicated his career to ensuring that all individuals are treated fairly and have the opportunity to succeed. He has served with integrity and distinction at the local, state and national level, compiling an outstanding record of achievement.
Civil Rights Monitor
The CIVIL RIGHTS MONITOR is a quarterly publication that reports on civil rights issues pending before the three branches of government. The Monitor also provides a historical context within which to assess current civil rights issues. Back issues of the Monitor are available through this site. Browse or search the archives
Volume 12 Number 1
On the Hill
On March 19, 2001 U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-CT) and Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) introduced the "Equal Protection of Voting Rights Act of 2001," (S. 565/H.R. 1170) to strengthen the election process in the United States by requiring states to meet uniform, nondiscriminatory voting system and technology standards, provide provisional voting, and distribute sample ballots and voting instructions prior to a federal election. After months of negotiations and over two weeks of Senate floor debate, a cloture vote on the bill failed by a vote of 51 to 44 on March 4, 2002.
On March 27, 2001, at a press conference on Capitol Hill, members of Congress joined with representatives from MTV and the United Against Hate Coalition to announce the introduction of the Local Law Enforcement Enhancement Act (LLEEA) (S.625/H.R. 1343), formerly the Hate Crimes Prevention Act (HCPA), which seeks to remedy certain flaws in existing federal hate crime laws. The bill was placed on the Senate calendar and is expected to be taken up before Memorial Day.
On March 6, 2001, Rep. Thomas Barrett (D-WI) introduced the Community Reinvestment Modernization Act of 2001 (H.R. 865) into the 107th Congress. The bill is designed to update the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) to keep pace with the rapid changes that are occurring in the financial services marketplace.
At a press conference on June 6, 2001, several members of Congress joined members of the law enforcement and civil rights communities to announce the introduction of the "End Racial Profiling Act of 2001"(S. 989/H.R. 2074). This bipartisan legislation bans racial profiling and requires federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to take steps to eliminate the practice. Senate and House co-sponsors have written to President Bush urging him to honor his commitment to end racial profiling and asking that he work with them to gain passage of the bill.
On May 23, 2001 the House passed the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) (H.R. 1), with the Senate passing its own version (S. 1) not long after on June 14. There are several differing provisions in the two bills, to be resolved in conference committee. The "No Child Left Behind Act" (P.L.- 107-110) was signed into law on Jan. 8, 2002.
At a press conference on July 31, members of congress came together to announce the reintroduction of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2001 (ENDA) (S.1284/ H.R.2692). The bill would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, providing basic protection to ensure fairness in the workplace for Americans who are currently denied equal protection under the law. Currently, it is legal to fire someone in 39 states because he or she is gay. The bill is slated for committee mark up in April and is expected to be sent to the floor before the end of the session.
IN THE COURTS
On April 24, 2001, in Alexander v. Sandoval, the Supreme Court in a 5-4 decision shattered decades of practice and settled expectations regarding bedrock civil rights laws. The majority opinion held there is no private right of action to enforce the regulations prohibiting practices with a discriminatory effect on the basis of race or ethnicity under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE ACTIVITIES
On Oct. 26, 2001, prominent leaders from the civil rights, religious and congressional communities gathered at a vigil in Washington for community, tolerance and healing. The message of the vigil was simple: In times of war as well as in times of peace, we are all one America, bound together by the freedoms and values codified in the Constitution.
On Oct. 4, 2001, the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights/Education Fund launched a new public service announcement (PSA) campaign spearheaded by Grammy award-winning artist Dave Matthews, calling on viewers to reflect on the promise of America: that people who trace their heritage to every nation on Earth can live together with equal rights and mutual respect.