Question: What Constitutional and federal laws protect me against civil rights violations?
The first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, which are known as the "Bill of Rights," and federal anti-discrimination laws provide you with your primary protections.
Four constitutional rights are commonly used in civil rights cases. These include:
- The First Amendment, which protects you against violations of your freedom of speech, religion, and association
- The Fourth Amendment, which protects you against illegal searches and seizures by law enforcement and police excessive and deadly force
- The Eighth Amendment, which protects you against federal government abuse in the form of cruel and unusual punishment and deliberate indifference to serious medical needs
- The Fourteenth Amendment, which protects you against government violations of your due process rights and guarantees you equal protection of the laws
The two most widely used federal anti-discrimination laws are:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)
- The Civil Rights Act 42 U.S.C. 1983 (Section 1983)
Title VII protects private and public employees from workplace harassment and civil rights discrimination. Title VII makes it unlawful to discriminate based on race, color, national origin, religion, and sex. Federal law also makes it unlawful to discriminate in the workplace on the basis of age, disability, and pregnancy.
Section 1983 is a federal law that allows you to sue the federal and state government if they violate your civil rights.
Contact a Georgia civil rights attorney today for a free consultation.
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