Civil and Human Rights Coalition Responds to Secretary DeVos’ Testimony

Media 06.6,17

WASHINGTON—Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement in response to Secretary DeVos’ testimony today before the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee:

“We were glad to hear Secretary DeVos restate the law today – that recipients of federal funds must follow federal law and may not discriminate against any student on the basis of disability, race, ethnicity, immigration status, language, gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation.  But words alone are insufficient.  She must use her authority as Secretary to make that prohibition and those protections for students real.  The Department must also proactively support schools to prevent discrimination and intervene when the law is broken.  This can’t just be about talk; students need and deserve action.”

On Monday, several national civil rights leaders spoke out on the implications of DeVos’ alarming lack of commitment to protecting all students’ civil rights.  More information is available here.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 200 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its 200-plus member organizations, visit