The Vermont Human Rights Commission promotes the following publications, which fall into the relevant and significant categories of school, racial profiling, and housing.
Jump to a section below:
- Racial Disparities
- Public Accommodations
- Sex, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity Rights
Vermont Human Rights Commission, Agency of Education, Office of the Attorney General and Office of the Governor joint press release to reassure Vermonters that the change in policy at the federal level related to bathrooms and locker rooms does not change Vermont law and the legal protections for our LGBTQ students.
Discrimination in the School System
In 2014, the Civil Rights Project issued a report describing racial segregation as "modest and localized," but addressed concerns that as diversity increases, segregation may also become a concern.
An additional study issued by Vermont Legal Aid investigated the relationship between suspension from school and racial minorities and those with disabilities, finding a strong correlation between the two.
2009 Legislative Study Committee Report on Harassment, Bullying, and Cyberbullying in Vermont Schools
The Vermont Legislature commissioned this report with the passage of Act No. 174 (5.357). Section 19 of that act established a committee to “study the issue of harassment and bullying in Vermont schools.” Specifically, the committee was directed to examine:
- the need for further training of educators and school staff to recognize and appropriately respond to the harassment and bullying of students;
- the need for legislative enactments to address cyber-bullying;
- state laws and regulations regarding harassment and bullying;
- school policies and procedures regarding harassment and bullying; and,
- any other issues regarding harassment and bullying that the committee deems relevant.
- the committee shall also study the issue of cyber-bullying of Vermont students and recommend measures to address this growing and destructive phenomenon.
- The report shall include a strategic plan to reduce the prevalence of harassment and bullying in Vermont schools.
The committee assessed the current state of efforts to address the destructive impact of harassment, bullying and cyberbullying; examined laws in other jurisdictions and carefully reviewed enactments to Vermont statutes to date; and proposed a limited revision of state law (Appendix 3) to provide clear authority to allow educators to address off-campus behaviors that negatively impact the educational opportunities of students who are the targets of harassment, bullying or cyberbullying.
- Harassment, Bullying, and Cyberbullying of Students in Vermont Schools
- Model Policy on the Prevention of Harrassment, Hazing and Bullying of Students
- Model Procedures on the Prevention of Harassment, Hazing and Bullying of Students
Section 3 of Act 54 charged the Attorney General (AGO), together with the Human Rights Commission (HRC) and interested stakeholders, with developing a strategy to address racial disparities within the state systems of education, labor and employment, access to housing and healthcare and economic development. On December 15, 2017 the following report was submitted:
- Attorney General and Human Rights Commission Task Force on Act 54- Racial Disparities in State Systems Report and Recommendations
- A Deeper Dive into Racial Disparities in Policing in Vermont, March 26, 2018
U.S. Commission on Civil Rights State Advisory Committee Reports
The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights is an independent, bipartisan federal agency established by Congress in 1957, reconstituted in 1983, and reauthorized in 1994. It is directed to investigate complaints alleging that citizens are being deprived of their right to vote by reason of their race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin, or by reason of fraudulent practices; study and collect information relating to discrimination or a denial of equal protection of the laws under the Constitution because of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin, or in the administration of justice; appraise federal laws and policies with respect to discrimination or denial of equal protection of the laws because of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin, or in the administration of justice; serve as a national clearinghouse for information in respect to discrimination or denial of equal protection of the laws because of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin; submit reports, findings, and recommendations to the President and Congress; and issue public service announcements to discourage discrimination or denial of equal protection of the laws.
By law, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights has established an advisory committee in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The committees are composed of state citizens who serve without compensation. The committees advise the Commission of civil rights issues in their states that are within the Commission’s jurisdiction. More specifically, they are authorized to advise the Commission on matters of their state’s concern in the preparation of Commission reports to the President and the Congress. They also receive reports, suggestions, and recommendations from individuals, public officials, and representatives of public and private organizations. They solicit responses to committee inquiries, forward advice and recommendations to the Commission as requested, and observe any open hearing or conference conducted by the Commission in their states.
- 1999 Report on Racial Harassment in Vermont Schools
- 2003 Supplemental Report on Racial Harassment in Vermont Schools
- 2009 Report on Racial Profiling in Vermont
Uncommon Alliance Report on Racial Disparities in Traffic Stops
In 2012, the Uncommon Alliance issued a report with an analysis about racial disparities in traffic stops in Chittendent County. The Burlington Police Department, South Burlington Police Department, Winooski Police Department, and the UVM Police Department all participated in the study.
Service and Assistance Animals
- U.S. Department of Justice and Department of Housing and Urban Development Joint Statement on Service Animals and Assistance Animals
- U.S. Department of Justice Guidance on Service Animals
Vermont Legal Aid Housing Discrimination Report
Between 2009 and 2011, the Housing Discrimination Law Project of Vermont Legal Aid conducted ninety-five paired rental visit tests, 300 paired linguistic telephone tests, and eighteen accessibility audits (measuring compliance with design and construction accessibility standards required under the Federal Fair Housing Act). Audit results indicate that housing providers generally disfavor African American renters, renters of foreign origin, renters with children, and renters with disabilities.
Testing results demonstrate preferential treatment toward white testers of U.S. origin without an apparent disability. The combined results of the rental visit and linguistic telephone audits reflect preferential treatment toward the white control testers in 38% of the race-based tests, 40% of the national origin tests, and 36% of the familial status tests. In 27% of rental visit audits conducted on the basis of disability, housing providers indicated preferential treatment toward the tester without an apparent disability, and in eighty-three percent of the eighteen accessibility tests conducted on newly -constructed multi-family housing units, testers found significant or minor noncompliance with FHA design and construction accessibility requirements.
- ADA Compliance Brief Restriping Parking Spaces 2015
- ADA Update A Primer for State Local Government
- ADA Update A Primer for Small Businesses
- U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Service Animal FAQ Sheet
Gas Stations and Convenience Store ADA Compliance
- Vermont Gas Stations and Convenience Stores Take Steps to Comply With The Americans With Disabilities Act (DOJ press release)
- Gas Pump Order Decal Form
- Gas Station FAQ Sheet
Gender Based Pricing
Sex, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity Rights in Employment, Public Accommodations, and Housing
The Vermont Human Rights Commission has published three brochures about discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity in the workplace, places of public accommodation, and housing. The brochures explain what the laws cover and who the laws apply to, and provide information about what is or is not prohibited under Vermont's anti-discrimination laws.
- A Guide to Vermont's Anti-Discrimination Law for Employers and Employees
- A Guide to Vermont's Anti-Discrimination Law for Housing Providers, Home Buyers and Tenants
- A Guide to Vermont's Anti-Discrimination Law for Stores, Restaurants, Schools, Professional Offices, and other Places of Public Accommodation