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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Background and Policy Issues

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Background and Policy Issues

Date: June 9, 2011
Creator: Blanchfield, Luisa
Description: This report provides an overview of the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child's (CRC) background and structure and examines evolving U.S. policy toward the Convention, including past and current Administration positions and congressional perspectives. It also highlights issues for the 112th Congress, including the Convention's possible impact on federal and state laws, U.S. sovereignty, parental rights, and U.S. family planning and abortion policy. In addition, the report addresses the effectiveness of CRC in protecting the rights of children internationally and its potential use as an instrument of U.S. foreign policy.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board: New Independent Agency Status

Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board: New Independent Agency Status

Date: November 14, 2011
Creator: Hatch, Garrett
Description: Recommended by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (9/11 Commission), the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) was initially established as an agency within the Executive Office of the President (EOP) in 2004. Critics, however, maintained that the board appeared to be a presidential appendage, devoid of the capability to exercise independent judgment and assessment or to provide impartial findings and recommendations. This viewpoint gained acceptance in the 110th Congress when the PCLOB was reconstituted as an independent agency within the executive branch by the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act (IR9/11CA), signed into law on August 6, 2007. On January 5, 2011, President Obama nominated two people to serve on the board, but the Senate has not confirmed either. This report will be updated as events warrant.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board: New Independent Agency Status

Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board: New Independent Agency Status

Date: August 27, 2012
Creator: Hatch, Garrett
Description: This report examines initial responses to the 9/11 Commission's call for a board to oversee adherence to presidential guidelines on information sharing that safeguard the privacy of individuals about whom information is shared, and the implementation of this board.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Photo ID Requirements for Voting: Background and Legal Issues

Photo ID Requirements for Voting: Background and Legal Issues

Date: November 2, 2012
Creator: Coleman, Kevin J.; Fischer, Eric A. & Whitaker, L. Paige
Description: Report concerning the controversy surrounding some states' requirements that voters provide photographic identification before casting a ballot.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Background and Policy Issues

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Background and Policy Issues

Date: August 5, 2009
Creator: Blanchfield, Luisa
Description: This report provides an overview of the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child's (CRC) background and structure and examines evolving U.S. policy toward the Convention, including past and current Administration positions and congressional perspectives. It also highlights issues for the 112th Congress, including the Convention's possible impact on federal and state laws, U.S. sovereignty, parental rights, and U.S. family planning and abortion policy.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Voting Rights Act of 1965: Background and Overview

The Voting Rights Act of 1965: Background and Overview

Date: July 20, 2015
Creator: Coleman, Kevin J.
Description: This report provides background information on the historical circumstances that led to the adoption of the Voting Rights Act (VRA), a summary of its major provisions, and a brief discussion of the U.S. Supreme Court decision and related legislation in the 113th and 114th Congresses. Two identical bills--H.R. 3899 and S. 1945--were introduced in the 113th Congress that would have amended the VRA to add a new coverage formula, among other provisions.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Sex Discrimination and the United States Supreme Court: Developments in the Law

Sex Discrimination and the United States Supreme Court: Developments in the Law

Date: December 30, 2015
Creator: Feder, Jody
Description: This report focuses on sex discrimination challenges based on: the equal protection guarantees of the Fourteenth and Fifth Amendments; the prohibition against employment discrimination contained in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; and the prohibition against sex discrimination in education contained in Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. Although this report focuses on recent legal developments in each of these areas, it also provides historical context by discussing selected landmark sex discrimination cases.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Civil Rights Legislation: Responses to Grove City College v. Bell

Civil Rights Legislation: Responses to Grove City College v. Bell

Date: May 27, 1988
Creator: Lyke, Robert F
Description: This report discusses how broad should the coverage of Federal civil rights laws be? This was the central issue in the debate over legislation introduced in response to the February 1984 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Grove City College v. Bell.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
U.S. Treatment of Prisoners in Iraq: Selected Legal Issues

U.S. Treatment of Prisoners in Iraq: Selected Legal Issues

Date: May 19, 2005
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
U.S. Treatment of Prisoners in Iraq: Selected Legal Issues

U.S. Treatment of Prisoners in Iraq: Selected Legal Issues

Date: January 14, 2005
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Lawfulness of Interrogation Techniques under the Geneva Conventions

Lawfulness of Interrogation Techniques under the Geneva Conventions

Date: September 8, 2004
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
U.S. Treatment of Prisoners in Iraq: Selected Legal Issues

U.S. Treatment of Prisoners in Iraq: Selected Legal Issues

Date: May 24, 2004
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Survey of Federal Laws Containing Goals, Set-Asides, Priorities, or Other Preferences Based on Race, Gender, or Ethnicity

Survey of Federal Laws Containing Goals, Set-Asides, Priorities, or Other Preferences Based on Race, Gender, or Ethnicity

Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Feder, Jody; Manuel, Kate M. & Taylor, Julia
Description: This report provides a broad, but by no means exhaustive, survey of federal statutes that specifically refer to race, gender, or ethnicity as factors to be considered in the administration of any federal program.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Religion and the Workplace: Legal Analysis of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as It Applies to Religion and Religious Organizations

Religion and the Workplace: Legal Analysis of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as It Applies to Religion and Religious Organizations

Date: January 20, 2011
Creator: Brougher, Cynthia
Description: This report reviews the scope of Title VII as it applies to religion and religious organizations and the requirements of the anti-discrimination protections and the accommodations provision. It also analyzes the exemptions available to religious organizations for the non-discrimination rules.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Congressional Redistricting and the Voting Rights Act: A Legal Overview

Congressional Redistricting and the Voting Rights Act: A Legal Overview

Date: April 2, 2013
Creator: Whitaker, L. Paige
Description: This report provides a legal overview of two key provisions of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) affecting congressional redistricting — Sections 2 and 5 — and selected accompanying Supreme Court case law. It examines a pending Supreme Court case, Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder, challenging the constitutionality of Section 5. It also provides a summary of selected legislation in the 112th and 113th Congresses that would establish additional requirements and standards for congressional redistricting.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Overview of Selected Federal Criminal Civil Rights Statutes

Overview of Selected Federal Criminal Civil Rights Statutes

Date: December 16, 2014
Creator: Smith, Alison M.
Description: Federal criminal civil rights laws impose criminal penalties for deprivation of certain federal rights, privileges, or immunities. These laws prohibit hate crimes based on race, color, religion, or national origin; the burning of places of worship; violence against health care providers; and the transport of persons (particularly women and children) for the purpose of enslavement or forced labor. Some of these laws require a discriminatory motivation while others, such as human trafficking, do not. Some cover offenders acting "under color of any law." The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigates alleged violations. Punishments can range from a fine to lifetime imprisonment; in some cases the death penalty may be imposed, depending upon the circumstances and the resulting injury, if any. This report provides a brief summary of selected federal criminal civil right statutes.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Civil Rights of Individuals with Disabilities: The Opinions of Judge Alito

Civil Rights of Individuals with Disabilities: The Opinions of Judge Alito

Date: December 2, 2005
Creator: Jones, Nancy Lee
Description: Judge Samuel Alito Jr. was nominated by President Bush to the U.S. Supreme Court on October 31, 2005. This report examines the opinions written by Judge Alito relating to civil rights for individuals with disabilities and includes a discussion of cases relating to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Fair Housing Amendments Act. In addition, Judge Alito’s federalism decisions are briefly analyzed and their potential impact on disability related issues is discussed. Decisions authored by Judge Alito, as well as selected dissents and decisions where he joined the majority are examined.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Civil Rights Opinions of U.S. Supreme Court Nominee Samuel Alito: A Legal Overview

Civil Rights Opinions of U.S. Supreme Court Nominee Samuel Alito: A Legal Overview

Date: December 12, 2005
Creator: Dale, Charles V
Description: During his 15 years as a federal appellate judge on the Third Circuit, Judge Alito has written for the majority, concurred, or dissented in several cases alleging discrimination based on race, ethnicity, gender, religion, and other prohibited grounds. His legal positions in these cases have varied, depending on the facts and law being applied, and defy rigid or facile classification. Nonetheless, some continuity in judicial approach, both substantive and procedural, may arguably be discerned from a review of several of his significant opinions.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Equal Rights Amendment (Proposed)

Equal Rights Amendment (Proposed)

Date: July 8, 1982
Creator: Gladstone, Leslie W
Description: The proposed Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was first introduced in 1923, and was passed by the Congress in 1972. In 1978, Congress extended the original deadline for ratification of the ERA. Thus, if it receives approval in the form of ratification by 38 States before June 30, 1982, the measure will become the 27th Amendment to the Constitution, and will require equal treatment under Federal and State laws and practices for all persons, regardless of sex.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Equal Rights Amendments: State Provisions

Equal Rights Amendments: State Provisions

Date: August 23, 2004
Creator: Gladstone, Leslie W
Description: Twenty states adopted state equal rights amendments between 1879 and 1998. The texts of most of these amendments either are similar to the proposed federal amendment or restate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. The timing of the enactment of these state amendments and the choice of wording reflect both the ebb and flow of the women's movement in the United States and the political culture of the particular states at the time of passage. A brief history of the women's rights movement as it relates to the passage of state equal rights amendments is included. The report ends with the text and the date of enactment of each amendment.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Equal Rights Amendment (Proposed)

Equal Rights Amendment (Proposed)

Date: October 18, 1974
Creator: Holcomb, Morrigene
Description: The proposed Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was first introduced in 1923, and was passed by the Congress in 1972. In 1978, Congress extended the original deadline for ratification of the ERA. Thus, if it receives approval in the form of ratification by 38 States before June 30, 1982, the measure will become the 27th Amendment to the Constitution, and will require equal treatment under Federal and State laws and practices for all persons, regardless of sex.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Civil Rights Commission Reauthorization

Civil Rights Commission Reauthorization

Date: April 10, 1998
Creator: Gladstone, Leslie W
Description: The Civil Rights Commission Act of 1998 (H.R. 3117) would reauthorize the commission through FY2001. It was introduced by Representative Canady on January 28, 1998, referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and reported with an amendment on March 2, 1998. It passed the House, amended, by voice vote on March 18.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): The Definition of Disability

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): The Definition of Disability

Date: March 9, 2006
Creator: Jones, Nancy Lee
Description: The threshold issue in any Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) case is whether the individual alleging discrimination is an individual with a disability. The ADA definition is a functional one and does not list specific disabilities. This report discusses the definition of "disability." It also briefly discusses the Supreme Court's opinions and analyze how the lower courts are interpreting the Supreme Court's holdings.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The 2009 U.N. Durban Review Conference: Follow-Up to the 2001 U.N. World Conference Against Racism

The 2009 U.N. Durban Review Conference: Follow-Up to the 2001 U.N. World Conference Against Racism

Date: November 20, 2008
Creator: Blanchfield, Luisa
Description: This report provides information on the 2001 World Conference Against Racism and the circumstances of U.S. withdrawal. It discusses preparations for the Durban Review Conference, including U.S. policy and reaction from other governments. It highlights possible issues for the 111th Congress, including the Review Conference preparatory process, U.S. funding of the Conference, and the political and diplomatic impact of U.S. engagement.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department