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EPA's Program to Implement Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin in all programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance. Title VI itself prohibits intentional discrimination.

The Supreme Court has ruled, however, that Title VI authorizes federal agencies, including EPA, to adopt implementing regulations that prohibit discriminatory effects as well as intentional discrimination. Frequently, discrimination results from policies and practices that are neutral on their face, but have the effect of discriminating. Facially-neutral policies or practices that result in discriminatory effects violate EPA's Title VI regulations unless it is shown that they are justified and that there is no less discriminatory alternative.

Title VI allows persons to file administrative complaints with federal departments and agencies alleging discrimination by financial assistance recipients. The Office of Civil Rights has the responsibility within EPA to process and review Title VI administrative complaints.

For more information about EPA's Title VI program:

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