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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

February 15, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the House passed H.R. 620, the ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017. The legislation attacks the civil rights of Americans with disabilities. “Passage of H.R. 620 is the latest attack on the rights of individuals with disabilities. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a bipartisan civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities and ensures access to places of employment and schools, as well as public buildings and services. H.R. 620 undermines the goals of the ADA to create a more inclusive society and provide equal participation for all members of the community."
January 24, 2018 Press Release
NEWPORT NEWS, VA – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement on the passing of Wyatt Tee Walker: “It is with deep sadness that I note the passing of Wyatt Tee Walker. Reverend Walker, a close aide to Martin Luther King Jr., was an international advocate for equality, but he began much of his work in Virginia. He graduated from Virginia Union University, founded the Petersburg Improvement Association, and led the local chapter of the NAACP. He was one of the most prominent voices for civil rights, and his passing is a loss for the Commonwealth and the nation. I extend my deepest condolences to his family, friends and to anyone affected by his passing.”
January 18, 2018 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announcement on its decision to create a new Conscience and Religious Freedom Division in the Office for Civil Rights: “Today, the Trump administration announced its decision to create a new Conscience and Religious Freedom Division in the Office for Civil Rights. This announcement must be examined as part of the administration's broader pattern of promoting discrimination. There is no indication that patients’ access to appropriate health care will not be jeopardized. The administration has already issued a rule to allow virtually any employer or institution of higher education to deny preventive health services for women, and continues to take steps to open the door for discrimination against members of the LGBTQ community, those in interracial relationships, and minority religious groups."
October 5, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) and Representative Mark Takano (CA-41), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Workforce Protections, issued the following statement after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the Department of Justice is reversing a policy that protects transgender workers from discrimination. “Attorney General Sessions’ decision to dismiss the Obama administration’s memo to protect transgender Americans under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act is yet another example of the Trump administration’s disturbing pattern of rolling back the civil rights of the most vulnerable Americans. In 1989, the Supreme Court found in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins that gender discrimination based on sex stereotyping is a violation of Title VII.
September 7, 2017 Press Release

As originally released by the Committee on Education and the Workforce, Democrats

WASHINGTON, DC – Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the House Judiciary Committee passed, on a party line vote, H.R. 620 the ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017, legislation that attacks the civil rights of Americans with disabilities.

September 5, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Bobby Scott (VA-03), ranking member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, released the following statement after Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed that President Trump is ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. “I am deeply disappointed President Trump is ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. In 2012, we asked undocumented immigrants who were brought here at a young age, through no fault of their own, to step out of the shadows and undergo robust background checks in exchange for work authorization and temporary relief from deportation. We promised them an opportunity to legally contribute to their communities.
August 21, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA), ranking member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), ranking member of the House Committee on Judiciary, Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, and Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Judiciary, sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos about a recent memo that showed intent of the Departments of Justice (DOJ) and Education (ED) to reexamine the process by which the federal government ensures racial diversity on college campuses.
August 14, 2017 Press Release
NEWPORT NEWS, VA – Days after the horrific violence at a “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, President Trump finally named the groups who perpetrated the violence: white supremacists and neo-Nazi sympathizers. Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement in reaction to the President’s remarks: "While I welcome the President’s condemnation of overt racism and white nationalism in response to this weekend’s horrible events, I remind everyone that actions speak louder than words. It is equally important to support actions that actually enforce civil rights, strengthen voting rights, and expand opportunity for all. "
August 12, 2017 Press Release
NEWPORT NEWS, VA – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement on the violent clashes at the "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, VA: "I am deeply concerned about the unfolding situation in Charlottesville where white nationalists have violently clashed with counter-protesters. While I respect their First Amendment right to assemble and freedom of speech, this sort of violence and hate speech has no credible role in our public discourse.
August 2, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON – Representatives Bobby Scott (VA-03) and John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13), the ranking members of the House Committees on Education and the Workforce and the Judiciary, respectively, issued the following statement after reports surfaced that the Department of Justice plans to attack and undermine affirmative action programs in colleges and universities. “While we cannot comment on the veracity of this alleged memo, we are deeply concerned by news reports that the Department of Justice intends to challenge the application of affirmative action programs in colleges and universities. What is already clear is the Trump Administration’s public record of attacking civil rights protections on multiple fronts. As ranking members, we led 86 Members of the House in an amicus brief in support of affirmative action programs in higher education.