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Congressman Bobby Scott

Representing the 3rd District of Virginia

Civil Rights

Congressman Scott is an ardent defender of civil rights.  Although America has made great strides in civil rights in the past few decades, current events have shown that we still have a long way to go.  The current threats to civil rights are not the explicit actions our predecessors may have seen and experienced. Instead, they are subtle actions that, if allowed to continue, could threaten our rights and lives in the future. Examples of such actions include religious and racial profiling, xenophobic rhetoric in political discourse, expelling minorities from school in disproportionate rates, uneven application of justice, employment discrimination, restricting the right to vote, and pay inequality.

Congressman Scott has co-sponsored several pieces of legislation aimed at correcting or preventing the furtherance of discriminatory acts, such as the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) of 2013, the Student Non-discrimination Act of 2013, the End Racial Profiling Act of 2013, and the Respect for Marriage Act (which would make it illegal for any state to refuse to recognize a legal same-sex marriage from any other state). He also supported the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 and is a cosponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act.

More on Civil Rights

December 21, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the Department of Education announced that it is rescinding the 2014 ED-DOJ Discipline Guidance. “The Department’s decision to rescind the 2014 discipline guidance will undermine access to a quality education for students of color and students with disabilities. The guidance was issued to help schools address the troubling and undeniable evidence that Black students, boys, and students with disabilities receive harsher punishments than their classmates for similar or lesser offenses, without jeopardizing students’ safety. Rescinding the guidance will stall, if not reverse our progress toward addressing these disparities.
December 18, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the release of the Trump administration’s school safety commission report. “The Federal School Safety Commission Report is not a serious or good-faith effort to make schools safer for students and educators. The report’s recommendations ignore both the research consensus and the demands of students and parents for tougher gun laws. Instead, the report promotes a longstanding, conservative agenda to undermine policies that protect students’ civil rights.
November 16, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) released the following statement in response to the Education Department’s proposed rule, released today, which revises standards for schools’ responsibility under the Title IX to respond to campus sexual assault and harassment. “The Title IX proposal released today would be a damaging setback for our efforts to prevent campus sexual harassment and assault. The bottom line is that by allowing schools to use this new process and evidentiary standard, this rule would make it harder for survivors of sexual misconduct to achieve justice. Institutions must secure due process for the accused, while achieving dignity and providing the support services survivors deserve.
November 14, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Don Beyer (VA-08), Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT), Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03), the top Democrat on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA), the top Democrat on the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, introduced the Keeping All Students Safe Act to protect students from the dangers of seclusion and restraint at school. The legislation would make it illegal for any school receiving taxpayer dollars to seclude children.
October 15, 2018 Press Release
NEWPORT NEWS, VA- Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after signing on as a co-sponsor of HR 2472 the Disability Integration Act: “Today I’m joining as a cosponsor of the Disability Integration Act. Despite the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) becoming law more than 28 years ago, many individuals with disabilities are still forced to live in segregated settings due to the way our health care system provides services. All Americans with disabilities have the right to achieve economic self-sufficiency, live independently, and fully participate in all aspects of their community.
August 30, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) released the following statement in response to a report from the New York Times that revealed Secretary DeVos’s draft proposal to rewrite policies for addressing sexual misconduct on campus. “The draft regulation regarding sexual harassment and misconduct that is reportedly under consideration by Secretary DeVos would be a major step backward in our collective effort to provide a safe learning environment for all students. The proposed rule creates a new process and evidentiary standard that makes it harder for survivors of harassment, abuse, and assault to achieve the justice they deserve.
August 2, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Yesterday, Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03), Ranking Member of the Education and Workforce Committee, and Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), Ranking Member on the House Judiciary Committee, sent a letter signed by 67 Members of Congress to the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) in response to the agency’s recent revisions to the Transgender Offender Manual. The revisions as written by the BOP make it harder for transgender prisoners to be placed in appropriate facilities and housing, increasing the likelihood of sexual assault and rape. “Prisoners should never face rape or sexual assault as part of their sentence and the Supreme Court agrees,” said Ranking Member Scott (D-VA) and Ranking Member Nadler (D-NY). “With these changes to the Transgender Offender Manual, the Bureau of Prisons will knowingly place transgender prisoners at risk by denying them appropriate facility placements – violating the bi-partisan and unanimously passed Prison Rape Elimination Act, as well as the Constitution’s prohibition on cruel and unusual punishments.
July 3, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03), ranking member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, and Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), ranking member of the House Committee on the Judiciary, issued the following statement after the Trump administration announced it will rescind Obama-era guidance that provides recommendations to boost diversity on campuses. “The Trump administration’s decision to rescind Obama-era guidance promoting campus diversity contradicts the Supreme Court’s ruling in Fisher v. University of Texas that schools have a compelling interest in pursuing a diverse student body. In addition, it disregards extensive research demonstrating the benefits of campus diversity for all students. Today, the Trump administration is once again eroding important civil rights protections without providing a legitimate rationale or legal justification.
June 29, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA), ranking member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Education announced a two-year delay of the Equity in IDEA rule. “The Education Department’s decision to delay the Equity in IDEA rule, which addresses disproportionate identification, placement, and disciplinary treatment of students of color with disabilities, is another example of this administration’s continued failure to protect students’ civil rights.
June 26, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. –Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the Supreme Court handed down a 5-4 decision in Hawaii v. Trump, upholding the President’s Muslim ban: “President Trump promised voters a ‘total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States’ during his campaign. He then enlisted Rudy Giuliani to help disguise a policy borne from religious and racial animus toward Muslims. Giuliani was honest about the strategy: ‘When he first announced it, he said “Muslim ban”…He called me up, he said, “Put a commission together, show me the right way to do it legally.”’ The Administration followed Giuliani’s advice, and unfortunately, the Supreme Court legitimized their scheme in spite of the President’s multiple statements declaring his true intent which was to discriminate against Muslims. This is a dangerous decision that undermines the Constitution and American values.