Federal Protections Against National Origin Discrimination (NUREG/BR-0459)

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Publication Information

Date Published: September 2009

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001


Federal laws prohibit discrimination based on a person’s national origin, race, color, religion, disability, sex, and familial status. Laws prohibiting national origin discrimination make it illegal to discriminate because of a person’s birthplace, ancestry, culture or language. This means people cannot be denied equal opportunity because they or their family are from another country, because they have a name or accent associated with a national origin group, because they participate in certain customs associated with a national origin group, or because they are married to or associate with people of a certain national origin.

The Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division is concerned that national origin discrimination may go unreported in the United States because victims of discrimination do not know their legal rights, or may be afraid to complain to the government. To address this problem, the Civil Rights Division has established a National Origin Working Group to help citizens and immigrants better understand and exercise their legal rights. If you think you, or someone you know, has been discriminated against because of national origin and want to learn more about exercising your legal rights, you should read this brochure.

This brochure explains the laws prohibiting national origin discrimination and provides some examples. You may find additional information about the Civil Rights Division and its Sections on the internet at http://www.usdoj.gov/crt. You may contact the Division to report complaints of discrimination as explained below.

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