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NEWS
February 18, 2011
As a civil right activist, I have spent my life fighting to make ours a more just and fair society. That's why I urge the Maryland General Assembly to support marriage equality and pass the Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act. I firmly believe that this is a matter of civil rights, equal protection and equality. Civil rights are positive legal prerogatives — the right to equal treatment before the law. These are rights shared by everyone; there is no one in the United States who does not — or should not — share in enjoying these rights.
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BUSINESS
Kevin Rector and The Baltimore Sun | September 15, 2014
The owners of two popular restaurants in downtown Baltimore have agreed to pay $1.3 million and establish new hiring measures to settle a years-old lawsuit alleging racial discrimination against black applicants and employees. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed the lawsuit in 2008 against McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurants Inc. and Schmick Restaurant Corp., owners of McCormick & Schmick's and M&S Grill in the Inner Harbor. The lawsuit claimed the restaurants violated the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by refusing to hire black applicants for front-of-the-house positions such as servers and hostesses.
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NEWS
By Alison Knezevich, The Baltimore Sun | February 21, 2012
Transgender people would be protected from discrimination in Baltimore County under a measure approved by the County Council Tuesday, making the county the fourth local government in Maryland to adopt such protections. Council members did not add a heavily debated amendment proposed last week that would have specifically exempted bathrooms, locker rooms and dressing rooms. Instead, the council left the bathroom issue open to interpretation in the legislation, amending the measure so that the protections do not apply to "distinctly private or personal" facilities.
ENTERTAINMENT
Richard Gorelick and The Baltimore Sun | September 4, 2014
The former beverage manager at the Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore is suing the hotel's operator for wrongful or abusive discharge, harassment, gender discrimination and for creating a hostile work environment.  In the suit, Tiffany Dawn Cianci claims she was harassed repeatedly by her superiors and ultimately terminated after refusing to sell alcohol that she believed was acquired outside of Maryland law. She also cites what the suit called “humiliating”...
NEWS
May 9, 2011
The brutal beating of Chrissy Lee Polis at the Rosedale McDonald's rightly calls attention to the systemic stigmatization of transgender individuals living in Maryland ("Transgender Advocates See McDonald's Beating as a Turning Point" April 30). Yet the devastating health effects of this discrimination go well beyond physical attacks. The estimated prevalence of HIV infection among male to female transgender Americans is between 14.7 percent and 27.7 percent, vastly higher than the general U.S. population.
NEWS
February 9, 2013
For 102 years, people have been treated unequally by the Boy Scouts, and on Jan. 28, the organization's board delayed a vote on whether to allow local chapters to decide whether to admit gay members and leaders. In Maryland where gay couples are now legally allowed to get married, they still may not be allowed to join Scouting. This ultimately provides an adverse consequence to a newly-earned freedom. No one should not be declined from the Boy Scouts because of sexual orientation.
NEWS
November 12, 2011
In a directive worthy of the oxymoron "slavery is freedom," from George Orwell's novel "Animal Farm," the Roman Catholic Church in effect has said that "discrimination is religious liberty" ("Bishops assail same-sex marriage," Nov. 10). In their directive, local bishops warn that if same-sex marriage is legalized in Maryland, Catholic businesses may actually have to supply food or flowers to people who are homosexuals. Imagine! This directive is a transparent (and desperate)
NEWS
May 20, 2014
As a long-time advocate for equal employment opportunity in the federal workplace, I applaud your recent article, "Report finds 'failure' in Social Security discrimination complaint process" (May 15) by John Fritze, which disclosed the recent audit of the Social Security Administration's employment discrimination complaints process conducted by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Now the EEOC needs to conduct audits of other federal agencies, including those in the legislative branch, because the shortcomings of the SSA's complaints process are not unique to that agency.
NEWS
April 25, 2011
Community meetings don't usually attract the disinterested or curious. The average person has a busy enough schedule, so such events tend to be packed with vocal opponents of whatever is being proposed. At least that's the kindest explanation available to excuse the recent outbreak of community-based hysteria involving Sheppard Pratt Medical Systems' proposal to turn a Ruxton mansion in an upscale rehabilitation facility to help those under treatment for mental illness make a transition back to living at home.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | July 12, 2012
About 1,000 Baltimore-area residents are expected to receive thousands of dollars each under a landmark $175 million settlement between the U.S. Department of Justice and Wells Fargo over accusations of discriminatory lending practices. Under the terms of the deal announced Thursday, Wells Fargo also will provide $7.5 million to the city of Baltimore, which federal officials credited with first raising issues of discrimination related to bank's subprime mortgages. The city alleged Wells Fargo steered minorities into subprime loans, gave them less favorable rates than white borrowers and foreclosed on hundreds of Baltimore homes, creating blight and higher public safety costs.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | August 20, 2014
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's administration settled a discrimination complaint brought by the U.S. Department of Justice, agreeing to ensure that hiring follows rules that forbid asking most job candidates to take medical exams. The Justice Department had accused the city of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act after the Fire Department refused to hire a candidate for a dispatcher position when a medical exam revealed that she had a disability. The city agreed to pay the woman $65,000 and to ensure its hiring policies and practices follow the law, according to a consent decree filed with a complaint in U.S. District Court on Wednesday.
FEATURES
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun | July 22, 2014
In a reversal of state healthcare policy, transgender state employees in Maryland can now access gender reassignment surgery, hormone therapy and other transition-related care under their state-provided health insurance plans. The change quietly went into effect at the start of this month as the result of legal negotiations in a discrimination case brought against the state by Sailor Holobaugh, a 31-year-old clinical research assistant in neurology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore.
NEWS
By Matthew Hay Brown, The Baltimore Sun | July 17, 2014
The Social Security Administration is overhauling its internal anti-discrimination program after federal auditors found that the agency failed to establish an adequate system for handling employee claims. Auditors from the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reported in May that the Woodlawn-based agency had failed to follow regulations on addressing workplace discrimination complaints, had manipulated data to boost case completion rates and might have allowed managers to interfere in what were supposed to be impartial investigations.
NEWS
By Julie Scharper, The Baltimore Sun | June 28, 2014
This was the promise: No longer would African-Americans be forced to pick up their meals from the back door of restaurants. No longer would they need to fear being unable to find lodgings on their way home from a trip. And no longer would those who denied them a seat in a theater or on a merry-go-round be able to cloak their prejudice with the law. President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act on July 2, 1964, the culmination of decades of struggle for racial equality.
NEWS
May 20, 2014
As a long-time advocate for equal employment opportunity in the federal workplace, I applaud your recent article, "Report finds 'failure' in Social Security discrimination complaint process" (May 15) by John Fritze, which disclosed the recent audit of the Social Security Administration's employment discrimination complaints process conducted by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Now the EEOC needs to conduct audits of other federal agencies, including those in the legislative branch, because the shortcomings of the SSA's complaints process are not unique to that agency.
NEWS
By Justin George, The Baltimore Sun | May 18, 2014
Cornell William Brooks, an attorney and minister from Northern Virginia, will lead the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization at a time when the NAACP is experiencing a resurgence in influence and recruitment but struggling with budget issues. Brooks, whose appointment was announced Saturday, becomes the 18th person to oversee the Baltimore-based group, which includes more than 2,000 local units nationwide. As CEO, the 53-year-old Brooks follows Benjamin Jealous, whom many credit for helping to modernize the NAACP and return it to prominence.
BUSINESS
March 13, 2010
A federal court judge on Friday granted Baltimore more time to file a new discrimination complaint against mortgage-lender Wells Fargo Bank, which city leaders had asked for in the hopes that they could instead reach a deal "without the need for further litigation." An earlier lawsuit, alleging that the bank targeted minority borrowers for bad loans, was dismissed in January as too broad and "not plausible." U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz left the door open for the city to file a narrower suit by March 12, however.
EXPLORE
February 11, 2013
I am the Realtor that was the agent for the seller of the land that was sold to the Chin Baptist Church. Shortly after this became public knowledge I was approached by a neighbor. He told me this had to be stopped because if you let one Korean into the neighborhood than other Koreans will want to move into the neighborhood. By the way they are not Koreans. Later my son came home and told me that an adult had told him that I was the person who let the gooks into the neighborhood. I don't know if this person was serious or not. The first public hearing was on an Ash Wednesday.
NEWS
By John Fritze, The Baltimore Sun | May 15, 2014
The Social Security Administration has failed to establish an adequate process for handling discrimination claims from employees and has sparked concerns about conflicts of interest in some of those cases, according to a scathing federal report obtained Thursday by The Baltimore Sun. Auditors at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, charged with enforcing workplace discrimination laws, said the agency failed to follow regulations when handling...
NEWS
May 4, 2014
As job training practitioners and advocates for effective policies and practices for people returning from prison, we are pleased with the Baltimore City Council's decision to "Ban the Box. " ( "Council passes 'Ban the Box' legislation," April 28). The legislation expands current law by requiring private businesses with 10 or more employees to eliminate questions about previous arrests or convictions from initial job applications. The Greater Baltimore Grassroots Criminal Justice Network applauds Councilman Nick Mosby's leadership and the accompanying support of the City Council.
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