Protect Civil Rights

At ADL, we work towards a world characterized by justice and respect for all people, and free of all forms of discrimination.  Our work for more than 100 years recognizes that there can be no safety or justice for all if any vulnerable group is targeted by hate and discrimination. Our efforts to combat discrimination embrace all individuals and groups that face bias and inequity. We make an impact by raising awareness through education, advocating for change in the legislative and legal arenas, and speaking out in the press, social media and other influential forums against discriminatory practices.

Advocate in the Legislatures and Courts

For more than 70 years, ADL has supported anti-discrimination laws and regulations that explicitly bar discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations on the basis of various protected identity categories. We work with lawmakers to develop and enact legislation that fights discrimination on the federal, state and local levels. We have not only advocated for inclusive anti-discrimination laws such as the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and Equality Act, but also for an inclusive interpretation and enforcement of existing federal anti-discrimination laws.

ADL has also engaged in legal advocacy on matters of national significance that relate to our work of fighting all forms of discrimination. Since our first amicus (friend of the court) brief in a landmark 1947 real estate case involving restrictive racial covenants, we have filed and joined amicus briefs in hundreds of civil rights cases in state and federal courts. These include landmark cases on voting rights, immigration, LGBTQ+ rights and religious freedom. We have also joined briefs in every major case on reproductive rights since Roe v. Wade.

Educate About Inclusivity

ADL’s anti-bias education programs teach young people to value inclusivity and speak out against bias. Millions of students — an entire generation — along with their teachers have already benefited from these programs, which have changed the cultures of thousands of schools across the country.

Our discussion guides and lesson plans help parents and teachers have rich, meaningful conversations with children of all ages about challenging topics including racial justice, gender equity, LGBTQ+ rights and antisemitism.