Text Box: Civil Rights Compliance Training Module






Successful completion of this Programmed Learning Packet will provide you with one hour of training.

Civil Rights laws are enacted to remedy certain basic inequities in the legal, political and social system of our nation, to clarify the forms in which Civil Rights violations occur and to spell out penalties and sanctions for failure to provide all affected persons with "Equal justice under the law ..."

Equity, in the form of services to all qualified persons is so important that broad-ranged Federal and State laws have been enacted over the years to insure that ... No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, sex, age, disability, religion, national origin or political belief, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.  However, The Americans With Disabilities Act, which forbids discrimination against persons with disabilities, applies to all employees and services providers whether or not they receive any Federal financial assistance.

There are two critical terms to be defined:

    prejudice - an unjustified and unreasonable bias; a preconceived opinion about someone or something, usually unfavorable; and a feeling or attitude which almost all of us have about something.  If we are honest with ourselves, almost all of us have one or more prejudices.  Some people have preconceived notions about all rich people, that they are heartless and selfish. 

Others have preconceived notions about poor people, that they are lazy and enjoy being without certain advantages.

    discrimination - to make distinctions; good taste, discernment; and the use of good judgment.  Have you ever heard of a "person of discriminating taste?"  This person usually uses good judgment in the selection of clothes, furniture, associates, etc.  Then, using the definitions as shown, is discrimination in and of itself bad?  No!  Absolutely not!  But, there is a second part to the definition - "a showing difference or favoritism in  treatment ..."  Now, is there any problem with this definition?  Yes!  Used in this context, discrimination means: to treat someone differently than others; to deny persons access to facilities based on race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability or political belief.  This is against the law.

If we choose to hold on to our personal prejudices, that is our right.  But, it becomes DISCRIMINATION if we act on our prejudices - that is, when we take our thoughts and turn them into behaviors - which treat others differently, thereby denying others their equal rights.

Special nutrition programs and facilities they sponsor (including Head Start) must strictly adhere to and enforce the following :

  1.     Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (regarding discrimination in Federally-funded programs).

    1.     protection of certain classes of persons called "protected classes": race, color, national origin

    2.     public notification of non-discriminatory services

    3.     written compliant procedures

    4.     and other regulations aimed at eliminating discrimination

  2.     Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (regarding persons with disabilities in Federally-funded programs, compliance and compliant procedures).

    1.     protection of persons with disabilities

    2.     selection of someone to function as a  504 compliance coordinator

    3.     compliant and compliance stipulations similar to Title V!

  3.     The Age Discrimination Act of 1975

    •     has provisions to eliminate practices of discrimination on basis of age.

  4.     Americans with Disabilities Act of 1980 (ADA) (regarding all qualified persons with disabilities).

  5.     Title 40, Chapter 73 of the Texas Administrative Code (regarding discrimination to eligible participants).

    1.    Public Notification of non-discriminatory services

    2. Civil Rights Compliance of TDHS

    3. Compliant procedures

    4. Investigation procedures for Civil Rights compliance

    5. Administrative hearings

  6.     All USDA and TDHS directives or regulations (regarding discrimination within the food service program).

    •     specify to whom services will be delivered, how and under what circumstances.
  7.     Gender equality in education programs - Title IX of the Amendments of 1972 as amended.

    •      prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender (sex) by any educational program or activity operated by such recipient which receives or benefits from Federal financial participation.

All of the following categories are considered "protected classes":

  •     Race

  •     Color

  •     National Origin

  •     Sex

  •     Age

  •     Disability

  •     Political beliefs

  •     Religion

Adherence to these laws require efforts in the following areas:

Civil Rights Training

The Department of Human Services will provide Civil Rights training for your administrative staff.  But, the Special Nutrition Program Contractor must:

  1. provide similar training for all your staff including day care home providers.

  2. maintain documentation of the training you provided including:

    • who gave the training

    • date training was provided

    • topics covered, and

    • names of everyone in attendance

Services to Persons with Physical or Mental Disabilities

For public services, The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became effective on January 26, 1992.

Two laws, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which deals with disabilities and ADA , together prohibit a wide range of discriminatory actions to protect persons with disabilities.  ADA does not replace 504.  But, ADA is not limited to persons who receive federal financial participation.  ADA applies to almost everyone.

These laws prohibit discrimination against qualified persons in achieving access to:

Examples of things you must ask yourself regarding services under ADA

The Age Discrimination Act of 1975

This act deals with participants and is concerned with eliminating practices that prevent people from participating in programs or receiving services because of their age. 

This act states that no person in the United States shall, on the basis of age, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program activity receiving federal financial assistance.

        Note:  This act deals with discrimination in employment.   "Preconceived notions" about older people is a form of prejudice and if this results in discriminatory hiring practices, this is illegal. 

Test Questions:

1.  True  False The Special Nutrition Programs receive both federal and state tax dollars, therefore, the funds are to be used for the benefit of all eligible persons.
2.  True  False The Americans with Disabilities Act affects only persons with recognizable disabilities.
3.  True  False SNP contractors are affected by the same civil rights laws as the Department of Human Services.
4.  True  False The USDA "And Justice For All" and State equal rights posters only need to be displayed in the administration office of your agency.
5.  True  False Each contractor must have a written complaint procedure.
6.  True  False When you receive a civil rights complaint, all you need to do is handle it and notate it on a piece of paper for you file.
7.  True  False If you have a child of mixed racial background, you may categorize that child according to appearance or the group with which he/she mainly identifies.
8.  True  False You may not discriminate against program participants, or those with disabilities who seek services on behalf of program participants.
9.  True  False In order to facilitate access to facilities and services, you may have to alter your policies and procedures and remove all physical barriers.
10.  True  False If meal services to a program participant cannot be provided at you facility, you must provide an alternate method of assuring meal service to that person.
11.  True  False You may not charge a fee for persons who require special meals.
12.  Prejudice  Discrimination To treat someone differently than others; to deny persons access to employment, facilities or services is ___________________.


After completing this instrument, provide your Staff ID number, click you work "content area" and "job location". Forward to the Training Department. Your name is verification that you have read and understood the content of this module and have completed this learning program in good faith, and are willing to practice the principles outlined.

First Name             Last Name           HSGD Staff ID#        
Your Content Area                Job Location    

Civil Rights Compliance Training Module


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