Equality in Higher Education

Applicable Legal References

Gender Equality in Higher Education RCW 28B.110

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

No person in the United States 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 receiving Federal financial assistance.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination in employment based on sex as well as on race, color, religion or national origin. The act makes it unlawful to discriminate in hiring or firing; wages; fringe benefits; classifying, referring, assigning, or promoting employees; extending or assigning facilities; training, retraining, or apprenticeships; or any other terms, conditions, or privileges of employment.. As amended in 1972 it covers most employers of 15 or more employees, public and private employment agencies, labor unions with 15 or more employees, and joint labor-management committees for apprenticeship and training. Indian tribes are exempt as employers.

Title II of the Education Amendments of 1976

Title II of the Education Amendments of 1976 addresses sex discrimination, sex bias and sex stereotyping as it applies to state and federal vocational education programs. It specifies action that institutions should consider to overcome sex bias and stereotyping.

Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendments

The opening statement reads: "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance..." Title IX affects virtually all public school systems and post-secondary education institutions.

Age Discrimination in Employment Act

This act prohibits discrimination on the basis of age against any person between the ages of 40 and 70 in hiring, firing, compensation, or other conditions of employment. The law applies to all public employers, private employers of 20 or more employees, employment agencies serving covered employers, and labor unions of more than 25 members. It does not cover situations in which age is a bona fide occupational qualification (such as modeling "junior miss" fashions), nor does it affect bona fide seniority systems.

Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973

Employers covered by this section, as amended, must take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment qualified handicapped individuals without discrimination based on their physical or mental handicap. The title covers Federal contractors and subcontractors whose contracts are in excess of $2,500.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973

Section 504 provides that "no otherwise qualified handicapped individual shall, solely by reason of handicap, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."

Executive Order 11246

This order prohibits employment discrimination based on sex as well as on race, color, religion, or national origin by Federal contractors or subcontractors and on Federally assisted construction contracts. Coverage includes all facilities of the contractor, regardless of whether they are being used in the performance of the Federal contract. In the case of State or local governments holding contracts, coverage is limited to the agency participating in the contract.

Fair Labor Standards Act

The Fair Labor Standards Act, which is known as the Federal minimum wage and hour law, now covers the great majority of workers. However, casual baby-sitters and companions for the aged and infirm; executive, administrative, and professional employees; outside salespeople; employees of certain small, local retail or service establishments; and some agricultural workers are still exempted by the law from both minimum wage and premium pay for overtime provisions.

Equal Pay Act of 1963

This act amended the Fair Labor Standards Act to prohibit unequal pay for men and women who work in the same establishment and whose jobs require equal skill, effort, and responsibility. Differentials based on a seniority or merit system or on a system that measures earnings by quantity or quality of production are permitted. Employers may not reduce the wage rate of any employee in order to eliminate illegal wage differentials.

Tax Reform Act of 1976

Since 1976 a deduction (subtracted from gross income before computation of the income tax) has been authorized for child and dependent care. The Tax Reform Act of 1976 replaced the deduction with a tax credit (subtracted directly from taxes owed), effective with the 1976 taxable year.

National Apprenticeship Act

Under this Act the Federal Bureau of Apprenticeship works closely with employers and unions to encourage apprenticeship programs and maintain high standards. Regulations published in May 1978 require sponsors of programs with more than five apprentices to take affirmative action to recruit women, as well as minorities, when those groups do not have a reasonable share of the training opportunities.

National Labor Relations Act

This act, as amended by the Labor-Management Relations Act provides employees the right to form, join, or assist labor unions; to bargain collectively, through representatives of their own choosing, on wages, hours, and other terms of employment; or to strike to secure better working conditions. Employees are also guaranteed the right to refrain from membership or participation in a union except where such membership is a requirement of employment.

Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970

The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 is designated to ensure safe and healthful working conditions throughout the nation. It covers every employer in a business affecting commerce, except where the workplace is covered under a special Federal law such as those for the mining and atomic energy industries. Federal employees are covered by Executive Order, and State and local government employees may be covered by the state, operating under a plan approved by the Federal government.

Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act

This act provides that all union members have equal rights in nominating candidates for union office, voting in union elections and referendums, and participating in membership meetings.

Employee Retirement Income Security Act

In 1974 this act was enacted to protect the interests of most workers who participate in private employee pension and welfare benefit plans and their beneficiaries. This law is administered by the Department of Labor, the Internal Revenue Service, and an agency called the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.