Selected State Statutes
Freedom from Violence (California Civil Code, section 51.7)
(a) All persons within the jurisdiction of this state have the right to be free from any violence, or intimidation by threat of violence, committed against their persons or property because of their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, or position in a labor dispute, or because another person perceives them to have one or more of those characteristics. The identification in this subdivision of particular bases of discrimination is illustrative rather than restrictive.
This section does not apply to statements concerning positions in a labor dispute which are made during otherwise lawful labor picketing.
(b) As used in this section, "sexual orientation" means heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality.
Nondiscrimination in Education
(California Education Code,section 220)
No person shall be subjected to discrimination on the basis of sex, ethnic group identification, race, national origin, religion, color, mental or physical disability, or any basis that is contained in the prohibition of hate crimes set forth in subdivision (a) of Section 422.6 of the Penal Code in any program or activity conducted by an educational institution that receives, or benefits from, state financial assistance or enrolls pupils who receive state student financial aid.
Nondiscrimination in Employment and Housing (California Goverment Code, sections 12920-21)
§ 12920. Public policy
It is hereby declared as the public policy of this state that it is necessary to protect and safeguard the right and opportunity of all persons to seek, obtain, and hold employment without discrimination or abridgment on account of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition,marital status, sex, age, or sexual orientation.
It is recognized that the practice of denying employment opportunity and discriminating in the terms of employment for these reasons foments domestic strife and unrest, deprives the state of the fullest utilization of its capacities for development and advancement, and substantially and adversely affects the interest of employees, employers, and the public in general.
Further, the practice of discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, marital status, national origin, ancestry, familial status, disability, or sexual orientation in housing accomodations is declared to be against public policy.
It is the purpose of this part to provide effective remedies that will eliminate these discriminatory practices.
This part shall be deemed an exercise of the police power of the state for the protection of the welfare, health, and peace of the people of this state.
§ 12921. Employment and housing without discrimination as a civil right
(a) The opportunity to seek, obtain and hold employment without discrimination because of race, religious creed, color, nationalorigin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, or sexual orientation is hereby recognized as and declared to be a civil right.
(b) The opportunity to seek, obtain, and hold housing without discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, ancestry, familial status, disability, or any other basis prohibited by section 51 of the Civil Code is hereby recognized as and declared to be a civil right.
Prohibition of Hate Crimes (California Penal Code, section 422.6)
(a) No person, whether or not acting under color of law, shall by force or threat of force, willfully injure, intimidate, interfere with, oppress, or threaten any other person in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him or her by the Constitution or laws of this state or by the Constitution or laws of the United States because of the other person's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation, or because he or she perceives that the other person has one or more of these characteristics.
(b) No person, whether or not acting under color of law, shall knowingly deface, damage, ordestroy the real or personal property of any other person for the purpose of intimidating or interfering with the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to the other person by the Constitution or laws of this state or by the Constitution or laws of the United States, because of the other person's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation, or because he or she perceives that the other person has one or more of these characteristics.
(c) Any person convicted of violating subdivision (a) or (b) shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by a fine not to exceed five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine, and the court shall order the defendant to perform a minimum of community service, not to exceed 400 hours, to be performed over a period not to exceed 350 days, during a time other than his or her hours of employment or school attendance. However, no person shall be convicted of violating subsection (a) based upon speech alone, except upon a showing that the speech itself threatened violence against a specific person or group of persons and that the defendant had the apparent ability to carry out the threat.
Right of Students to Freedom of Expression (Annotated Laws of Massachusetts, chapter 71, section 82)
The right of students to freedom of expression in the public schools of the commonwealth shall not be abridged, provided that such right shall not cause any disruption or disorder within the school. Freedom of expression shall include without limitation, the rights and responsibilities of students, collectively and individually, (a) to express their views through speech and symbols, (b) to write, publish and disseminate their views, ( c) to assemble peaceably on school property for the purpose of expressing their opinions. Any assembly planned by students during regularly scheduled school hours shall be held only at a time and place approved in advance by the school principal or his designee.
No expression made by students in theexercise of such rights shall be deemed to be an expression of school policy and no school officials shall be held responsible in any civil or criminal action for any expression made or published by the students.
For the purposes of this section and sections eighty-three to eighty-five, inclusive, the word student shall mean any person attending apublic secondary school in the commonwealth. The word school official shall mean any member or employee of the local school community.
Discrimination in Education Prohibited (Annotated Laws of Massachusetts, chapter 76, section 5)
No person shall be excluded from or discriminated against in admission to a public school of any town, or in obtaining the advantages, privileges and courses of study of such public school on account of race, color, sex, religion, national origin or sexual orientation.
Antiharassment (Vermont Statutes Annotated, title 16)
§ 565. Harassment Policy
(a) Each school board shall develop, adopt and make available in the manner described under subdivision 563(1) of this title a harassment policy which includes:
(1) A statement prohibiting unlawful harassment of a student.
(2) The definition of harassment pursuant to subdivision 11(a)(26) of this title.
(3) Consequences and appropriate remedial action for staff or students who commit harassment.
§ 11. Classifications and definitions
(a) For the purposes of this title, unless the context otherwise clearly requires:
. . . . .
(26) "Harassment" means unlawful harassment which constitutes a form of discrimination. It means verbal or physical conduct based on a student's race, creed, color, national origin, marital status, sex, sexual orientation or disability and which has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with a student's educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment. Sexual harassment is also a form of unlawful harassment and means unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors and other verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature when:
(A) Submission to that conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a student's education.
(B) Submission to or rejection of such conduct by a student is used as a component of the basis for decisions affecting that student.
(C) The conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with a student's educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive educational environment.
P., New Hampshire|
Weaver, Teacher, Utah|
M., Midwestern United States|