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Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Training) Department of Veterans Affairs July 2012 Many-Bears Grinder, Commissioner.

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Presentation on theme: "Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Training) Department of Veterans Affairs July 2012 Many-Bears Grinder, Commissioner."— Presentation transcript:

1 Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Training) Department of Veterans Affairs July 2012 Many-Bears Grinder, Commissioner

2 Welcome to the Title VI Civil Rights Review Training presented by the Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs (TDVA) This training is required annually for all TDVA Employees

3 Race National Origin Color Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 states: 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 subject to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance. The situations covered by Title VI include a wide variety of services and programs including benefits for education, health care, housing, parks, transportation, location of facilities, etc.

4 Federal Financial Assistance –the transfer of money, property, services, or anything of value, the principal purpose of which is to accomplish a public purpose of support or stimulation authorized by Federal statute. Recipient -any State, political subdivision of any State, or instrumentality of any State or political subdivision, any public or private agency, institution, or organization, other entity, or any individual, in any State to whom Federal financial assistance is extended, directly or through another recipient, for any program, including any successor, assign, or transferee thereof, but such term does not include any ultimate beneficiary under any such program. Important Definitions Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

5 Although the civil rights laws only provide protection for the specified protected classes, it is the policy of the Department to provide fair and equitable treatment to every applicant and client.

6 The Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, religion, color, nationality, ethnic origin, age, disability, or in its policies in the admission of access to treatment, employment, its programs, services or activities. Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

7 What does this mean for TDVA staff? It means that TDVA is in the business of aiding all veterans, their family members and survivors in need of assistance. Thats what we do! We strive to provide benefits in a equitable manner and do not limit or alter our services based upon race, color, age, religion, sex, disability, national origin or political beliefs. Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

8 WE MUST: comply with Title VI regulations train staff annually train all new employees provide language assistance have a compliance officer provide a process on how to deal with civil rights complaints Requirements Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

9 Collection and use of data Effective public notification systems Complaint procedures Compliance review techniques Resolution of noncompliance Requirements for reasonable accommodation of persons with disabilities Requirements for language assistance Conflict resolution Customer service All state and local agencies must comply with USDA regulations on non-discrimination and the following requirements when training their staff: Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

10 Denying benefits or opportunities Providing services/benefits in a different manner or in a segregated environment Retaliation Restricting privileges National Origin / Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Discrimination Examples of Discriminatory Practices Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

11 For additional information on civil rights laws and regulations, you can contact the following: USDA, Regional Director, Office of Civil Rights, 61 Forsyth St., SW, Room 8T36, Atlanta, GA (866) (voice)/ (202) (TDD) Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs Title VI Compliance Officer, 312 Rosa L. Parks Ave. 13 th Floor, Tennessee Tower, Nashville TN , (615) , (615) , Tennessee Human Rights Commission Central Office, Andrew Johnson Tower, 710 James Robertson Parkway, suite 100, Nashville, TN m (615) office, (615) fax, Chapter I : Civil Rights Overview

12 Chapter II: Collection and Use of Data Collection and Use of Data

13 Determine how effectively the programs are reaching potentially eligible persons and beneficiaries, Identify areas where additional outreach is needed, Assist in the selection of locations for compliance reviews, and Complete reports, as required. (continued) Chapter II: Collection and Use of Data A very important part of TDVA program administration is the collection and reporting of data. This is necessary to:

14 Chapter II: Collection and Use of Data State and local agencies are required to obtain data by race and ethnic category on potentially eligible populations, applicants, and participants in their program service area. Systems for collecting actual racial and ethnic data must be established and maintained for all programs. Ask all program applicants and participants to identify all racial categories that apply. Self-identification or self-reporting is the preferred method of obtaining data.

15 Collected and retained by the service delivery point for each program as specified in program regulations, instructions, policies and guidelines Maintained for three (3) years under safeguards that restrict access of records only to authorized personnel Submitted as requested to federal agencies Chapter II: Collection and Use of Data The data collection system must ensure that data collected about applicants/participants is:

16 Chapter III: Effective Public Notification Systems Effective Public Notification Systems

17 The purpose of this system is to inform applicants, participants, and potentially eligible persons of: program availability, rights and responsibilities the policy of non-discrimination, and the procedure for filing a complaint. Chapter III: Effective Public Notification Systems All TDVA programs must include a public notification system.

18 3 Elements of Public Notification Chapter III: Effective Public Notification Systems 1. Program Availability Inform applicants and participants of their program rights and responsibilities and the steps necessary for participation. 2.Complaint Information Advise applicants and participants at the service delivery point of their right to file a complaint, how to file a complaint, and the complaint process. 3.Non-discrimination Statement All information materials and sources, including websites, used by the TDVA must contain a non-discrimination statement. The statement is not required to be included on every page of the program website. At a minimum the non-discrimination statement or a link to it must be included on the home page of the program information.

19 Methods of Public Notification Inform applicants and participants of programs or changes in programs. Provide appropriate information in alternative formats for persons with disabilities. Include the required non-discrimination statement on all appropriate TDVA publications, web sites, posters and informational materials. Convey the message of equal opportunity in all photos and other graphics that are used to provide department or program-related information. Chapter III: Effective Public Notification Systems

20 Chapter IV: Accommodation of Persons with Disabilities Requirements for Reasonable Accommodation of Persons with Disabilities TDVA may not discriminate against any qualified individual with a disability in providing services or administering any program or activity, whether or not the program receives federal financial assistance. In general, an individual with a disability is qualified if that person meets the essential eligibility requirements for receipt of services or participation in the program or activity. TDVA may not refuse to allow a person with a disability to participate because the person has a disability. It may be necessary to make reasonable accommodations to allow participation. TDVA may not harass a program participant or applicant based on a disability.

21 Chapter V: Requirements for Language Assistance Requirements for Language Assistance Limited English Proficiency (LEP) and language access issues are connected to the Civil Rights Act through a 1974 Supreme Court decision, which found that the Civil Rights Act also prohibits conduct that has a disproportionate effect on LEP persons because such conduct amounts to national origin discrimination.

22 Chapter V: Requirements for Language Assistance Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs (TDVA) will take reasonable steps to ensure that individuals with Limited English Proficiency have meaningful access and an equal opportunity to participate in our services, activities, programs and other benefits.

23 TDVA will promptly identify the language and communication needs of the LEP individual. If necessary, staff will use a language identification card (or I speak cards, available online at ) or posters to determine the language. In addition, when records are kept of past interactions with veterans, the language used to communicate with the LEP individual will be included as part of the record.www.lep.gov Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Chapter V: Requirements for Language Assistance

24 COMPLAINTS OF DISCRIMINATION Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination

25 COMPLAINTS OF DISCRIMINATION All complaints alleging discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex, disability or religious beliefs must be processed within the time frame established by department regulations. Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination

26 COMPLAINTS OF DISCRIMINATION Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination Right to File: Any person or their representative alleging discrimination based upon a protective class has the right to file a complaint within 180 days of the alleged discriminatory act.

27 COMPLAINTS OF DISCRIMINATION Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination In the event of a verbal complaint and the complainant refuses or is not inclined to place the allegation in writing, the person to whom the allegations are made must write up the elements for the complaint. Every effort should be made to ensure the complainant provides the following information:

28 COMPLAINTS OF DISCRIMINATION Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination Name, address and phone number of the complainant Location and name of the agency providing the services Nature of the incident that led the complainant to feel discrimination was a factor (continued)

29 COMPLAINTS OF DISCRIMINATION Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination The basis on which the complainant feels discrimination exists The names, phone numbers titles and business and personal addresses of persons who may have knowledge of the alleged discriminatory action and The date the action occurred (or duration if continuing)

30 Once the Complaint is Received Chapter VI: Complaints of Discrimination Civil Rights Compliance Officer requests information from regional office to either support or refute allegations; then it is reviewed and evaluated and a decision is rendered in the case. All complaints must be processed within 90 days of receipt. The parties are encouraged to resolve the issue at the lowest possible level and as expeditiously as possible. Recommends corrective action when necessary.

31 Chapter VII: Customer Service Customer Service

32 Chapter VII: Customer Service Customer Service While civil rights issues are a matter of law, we, at the Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs are in the business of serving people and meeting their needs during challenging times in their lives. The foundational elements of civil rights legislation should be reflected in every contact we have with the public.

33 Chapter VII: Customer Service Customer Service These foundational elements are the basis of our customer service: All people deserve respect. All people are entitled to fairness and equity in the delivery of our services and benefits. Personal judgments or feelings regarding race, color, country of origin, religious and political beliefs, sex, disabilities and age have no place in the determination of how we serve people and the benefits we provide.

34 Chapter VII: Customer Service Customer Service In addition to these foundational elements, customer service has some basic best practices that need to be part of every customer interaction. These are: Prompt Attention Willingness to Assist Respectful Address Active Listening Personal Accountability Fairness

35 This concludes the Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Civil Rights Review Training Please print off and fill out the Title VI Test and mail to: TDVA Attn: LaDonna Copeland 312 Rosa L. Parks Avenue, 13 th Floor Nashville, TN 37243


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