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U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights (OCR)
Overview of the Agency
The mission of the Office for Civil Rights is to ensure equal access to education and to promote educational excellence throughout the nation through vigorous enforcement of civil rights.
We serve student populations facing discrimination and the advocates and institutions promoting systemic solutions to civil rights problems. An important responsibility is resolving complaints of discrimination. Agency-initiated cases, typically called compliance reviews, permit OCR to target resources on compliance problems that appear particularly acute. OCR also provides technical assistance to help institutions achieve voluntary compliance with the civil rights laws that OCR enforces. An important part of OCR’s technical assistance are partnerships designed to develop creative approaches to preventing and addressing discrimination.
The Office for Civil Rights enforces several Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance from the Department of Education. Discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin is prohibited by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; sex discrimination is prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; discrimination on the basis of disability is prohibited by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; and age discrimination is prohibited by the Age Discrimination Act of 1975.
Civil Rights Hotline Call the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at 1-800-421-3481 to report any educational discrimination on the basis of race, sex, disability, etc., request information on civil rights compliance programs, procedures for filing discrimination complaints, or access to civil rights regulatory and policy documents. The local number in Washington, D.C. is 202-453-6100. Federal Relay Service. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. See the OCR Contact Us page to find the enforcement office serving your area or use the OCR Electronic Complaint Form.