Wednesday, July 21, 2021

The City of Austin Continues to Make Strides Combating Discrimination

Office of Civil Rights Hosting a Virtual Education Series Focused on Civil Right Protections

The City of Austin's Office of Civil Rights is holding a series of events to equip Austinites with the knowledge they need to challenge discrimination in housing and employment, after more than 100 allegations of unfair treatment were logged with the Office last year. Since being approved by the Austin City Council in August 2020, the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) has been dedicated to promoting racial equity and fighting discrimination in the City of Austin.
Federal laws prohibit discrimination based on a person's nationality, race, color, religion, disability, sex, and familial status. The City's OCR is empowered to receive complaints and enforce civil rights protections which guarantee equal social and economic opportunities, and equal protection under the law.
In 2020, the OCR investigated 97 employment and 34 housing complaints. These figures highlight the important work the department does to ensure Austinites live free from discrimination and other civil rights violations.
"Protecting civil rights is an essential piece of our democracy and implementing that protection is something the City's Civil Rights Office is dedicated to," said Civil Rights Officer Carol Johnson. "Through education and community outreach, we are working together to ensure racial and social equity for all Austinites."
In the department's work to promote accountability and responsibility, the Office of Civil Rights is hosting a virtual education series focused on the Fair Chance Hiring Ordinance and other civil right protections. The goal is to empower participants with information to increase economic opportunity; prevent and reduce discrimination; and protect the health and safety of Austin residents.

Registration for the workshops is free and each series will include presentations by industry professional speaking on the following critical topics:
  • Fair Chance Hiring for Job Seekers                  July 21, 2021               1:00PM – 2:30PM
  • Fair Chance Hiring for Employers                    August 26, 2021           1:00PM – 2:30PM
  • Employment Discrimination Education             September 22, 2021     1:00PM – 2:30PM
  • Housing Discrimination Education                    October 20, 2021         1:00PM – 2:30PM
This series aims to inform the community, employers, housing providers and businesses on specific civil rights protections for Austin residents, business owners and visitors.