Texas Insider Report: AUSTIN, Texas – June 16 marks the 23rd anniversary of the Texas Fair Housing Act, which was signed into law by Gov. William Clements in 1989. The law prohibits discrimination in housing on the basis of race, religion, color, gender, national origin, disability and familial status.
The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) is charged with investigating and seeking to conciliate complaints of discrimination in both housing and employment.
During state fiscal year 2011, the agency’s Civil Rights Division (CRD) investigated and closed 1,285 housing and employment discrimination complaints and in more than 350 cases the complaint was successfully conciliated or settled. More than $2.2 million in relief was obtained for individuals who filed claims alleging discrimination in Texas during that period.
“Texas law grants its citizens the opportunity to live and work in this state without being subject to discrimination,” said Commissioner Thomas M. Anderson, chair of the Texas Commission on Human Rights, the oversight board of the Civil Rights Division. “TWC’s Civil Rights Division will enforce the Texas Fair Housing Act and the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act against practices that violate fair housing and employment rights.”
The Texas Commission on Human Rights Act prohibits denial of employment based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex (includes sexual harassment and pregnancy), age, disability or retaliation. Individuals who believe they have been subject to employment discrimination can learn about how to file an employment discrimination complaint by visiting TWC online at www.texasworkforce.org/crd/file_emp.html.
Information on housing discrimination also is available online. Individuals can learn more about housing discrimination by visiting www.texasworkforce.org/crd/victim_housediscrim.html .
CRD provides training to employers and housing providers with the goal of preventing and eliminating illegal discrimination. TWC’s CRD is headed by the seven-member Texas Commission on Human Rights. Individuals, employers and housing providers may contact TWC’s CRD toll free at