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.

As one of the chief authors of the Every Student Succeeds Act, which was signed into law by President Obama in 2015, Congressman Scott ensured the bill lived up to the promise of Brown v. Board of Education and the original Elmenatary and Secondary Education Act by guaranteeing the right to an equal educational opportunity for every child, regardless of race, income, language status, or disability. As Chairman of the Committee on Education and Labor he has also authored the Equity and Inclusion Enforcement Act and the Strength in Diversity Act of 2019. These bills will help guarantee equity in educaiton and help address racial inequities in public schools. 

Congressman Scott has is also one of the chief sponsors of the Do No Harm Act, a bill that ensures nobody can use religious freedom as an excuse to discriminate against another person. He has also co-sponsored several pieces of legislation aimed at correcting or preventing the furtherance of discriminatory acts, such as the Equality Act and the End Racial Profiling Act of 2013. He also supported the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 and the first bill passed by the House under his leadership as Chairman of the Committee on Education and Labor was the Paycheck Fairness Act.

More on Civil Rights

July 1, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03), one of the Co-Chairs of the Congressional Voting Rights Caucus, issued the following statement on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee and Arizona Republican Party v. Democratic National Committee: “Today the Supreme Court approved laws that have a racially discriminatory impact under flawed and tortured legal theories. This will greenlight all kinds of future laws that have discriminatory impact and further erode voting rights. That is why we must enact the For the People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to restore the right to vote.
June 24, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the House of Representatives passed a resolution introduced by Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) that will protect victims of workplace discrimination. The Congressional Review Act Resolution of Disapproval (S. J. Res 13) repeals a Trump-era rule that forced the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to meet new burdensome requirements affecting workers who bring allegations of discrimination. The resolution, which the Senate passed on May 19, now heads to President Biden’s desk. “Every worker who seeks justice for workplace discrimination deserves swift and fair access to justice,” said Chairman Scott.
June 24, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Education and Labor Committee Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) delivered the following remarks on the House floor in support of S.J. Res 13, a Congressional Review Act resolution of disapproval that would nullify the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s conciliation rule. “Thank you, Madam Speaker. I rise today in support of Senate Joint Resolution 13, a Congressional Review Act resolution disapproving the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or EEOC, Conciliation Rule. This resolution will help ensure fairness for those who bring forth charges of unlawful workplace discrimination.
June 23, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Education and Labor Committee Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) delivered the following remarks on the House floor in support of H.R. 2062, the Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act. "Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise in support of H.R. 2062, the Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act, which I reintroduced this year with our colleague from Illinois—Mr. Rodney Davis. For decades, the federal government has recognized the need to protect older workers against discrimination on the basis of age. Unfortunately, in 2009, the Supreme Court severely eroded protections for older workers in the case of Gross v. FBL Financial Services, Inc. In its decision, the Court set a significantly higher burden of proof for workers alleging age discrimination.
June 17, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia. “The City of Philadelphia lost in today’s Supreme Court case because of technical issue in a contract. As a result, Philadelphia will have to give taxpayer money to a religiously-affiliated organization that may discriminate against potential foster parents. However, this decision was ultimately a victory, because moving forward the broader implication is if the contract language is drafted differently, ‘religious liberty’ cannot be used as an excuse for discrimination.
June 16, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after the House of Representatives passed S. 475 the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act: “I was very proud to vote today to finally establish Juneteenth as a national holiday and I was pleased to see broad bipartisan support for the legislation. I look forward to President Biden signing it in to law. This vote comes after the Commonwealth of Virginia formally recognized Juneteenth as a holiday last year and now a total of 49 states and Washington, D.C. now celebrate Juneteenth as a state or ceremonial holiday.
June 16, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement in response to the Education Department’s Notice of Interpretation that will prohibit schools receiving federal funds from discriminating against students on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. “I applaud the Biden-Harris Administration for taking this important step to strengthen protections against discrimination in schools. This announcement reflects our shared commitment to providing all students a safe and welcoming environment, and it aligns the Education Department’s interpretation of civil rights law with the definition established by the Supreme Court last year.
May 26, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-Va.), House Committee on Education and Labor, Representative Don Beyer (D-Va.), Representative Donald McEachin (D-Va.), Chair Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP), and Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) reintroduced the Keeping All Students Safe Act, legislation to protect students from dangerous seclusion and restraint discipline practices in school. The Keeping All Students Safe Act would make it illegal for any school receiving federal taxpayer money to seclude children and would ban dangerous restraint practices that restrict children’s breathing, such as prone or supine restraint.
May 21, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement after speaking with U.S. Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta: “Hampton Roads is still shocked by recent events of police-involved violence in our community. That is why I had a conversation yesterday with Associate Attorney General Gupta regarding the investigation of the shooting of Donovon Lynch in Virginia Beach and the disturbing traffic stop of Army Second Lieutenant Caron Nazario. Associate Attorney General Gupta told me that officials at the Department of Justice (DOJ) are monitoring the Commonwealth’s actions and that they are aware of the publicly available discrepancies in the accounts of these events.
May 17, 2021 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Education and Labor Committee Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) gave the following remarks to commemorate the 67th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education at the American Bar Association Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice webinar, entitled “Brown at 67: Reflecting and Reimagining. Thank you all for inviting me today to join this important discussion. In the 67 years since Brown v. Board of Education, the Education and Labor Committee has played a key role in our nation’s progress t owards achieving the promise of educational equity.