Empire Justice Center Main Page Empire Justice Center Main Page

 Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

LARC Home Page Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits national origin discrimination by recipients of federal funds, and disallows recipients from excluding LEP persons by:
  • providing services, financial aid, or other benefits that are different or provide them in a different manner;
  • restricting an individual's enjoyment of an advantage or privilege enjoyed by others;
  • denying an individual the right to participate in federally assisted programs;
  • and defeating or substantially impair the objectives of federally assisted programs.

Specifically, Section 601 of Title VI, 42 U.S.C. § 2000d et. seq., provides that no person shall, “on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity” covered by Title VI. Section 602 authorizes federal agencies “to effectuate the provisions of [§ 601] by issuing rules, regulations, or orders of general applicability.”

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in an exercise of this authority, created a regulation forbidding funding recipients to “utilize criteria or methods of administration which have the effect of subjecting individuals to discrimination because of their race, color, or national origin”

The Department of Justice (DOJ) regulations promulgated pursuant to section 602 forbid recipients from ‘‘utiliz[ing] criteria or methods of administration which have the effect of subjecting individuals to discrimination because of their race, color, or national origin, or
have the effect of defeating or substantially impairing accomplishment
of the objectives of the program as respects individuals of a particular race, color, or national origin.’’ 28 C.F.R. § 42.104(b)(2).

The DOJ regulations further provide that where "a significant number or proportion of the population eligible to be served or likely to be directly affected by a federally assisted program... needs service or information in a language other than English in order effectively to be informed of or to participate in the program, the recipient shall take reasonable steps, considering the scope of the program and the size and concentration of such population, to provide information in appropriate languages to such persons. This requirement applies with regard to written material of the type which is ordinarily distributed to the public." 28 C.F.R. § 42.405(d)(1).

These Title VI regulatory requirements have been interpreted to prohibit denial of equal access to programs or services because of an individuals limited proficiency in English. A complaint for a violation of this section can be submitted to the DOJ by using the forms below.


Frequently Asked Questions
Federal LEP
Title VI
Executive Order 13166
DOJ LEP Guidance
Federal Agency Guidance
LEP Topics
Court Access
Domestic Violence
Employment /Unemployment
Food Stamp Program
Health Care Services
Law Enforcement
Legal Services and Attorneys
Public Housing
Social Security
LEP Statistics
Census Data
Other Group Data
Resources and Training
Language Access Guides
Language Access Training
Model LEP Plans
New York Resources

Last Updated: March 27, 2009 ● Empire Justice Center © 2009