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In July 2022, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) changed its name to Civil Rights Department (CRD). CRD is responsible for enforcing laws prohibiting hate violence, human trafficking, discrimination in businesses, and discrimination in government funded programs, among other things.

                What does CRD do and who is protected?

CRD protects people of California from unlawful discrimination in housing, employment, business establishments, state funded programs, hate violence and more.

The Department allows people to file complaints. When someone files a complaint, the Department evaluates the facts and decides whether to begin an investigation and may also take legal action when it deems appropriate. CRD engages in public outreach to provide information unlawful discrimination, investigate and bring complaints of individual and systematic discrimination, facilitate mediations, and enforce laws by prosecuting violations in civil court.

Legally protected characteristics vary based on context. For example, under California law, it is unlawful for housing providers to discriminate based on the following characteristics:

  • Race, color
  • Ancestry, national origin
  • Citizenship, immigration status
  • Primary language
  • Age
  • Religion
  • Disability, mental and physical
  • Sex, gender
  • Sexual orientation
  • Gender identity, gender expression
  • Genetic information
  • Marital, familial status
  • Source of income
  • Military or veteran status

For more information, visit the CRD website at