Back to Top

Human and Civil Rights

As the director of a human rights and civil rights agency as well as being the ADA and Title VI Coordinator for an entire city, it is my duty to ensure equitable treatment for all. It is my privilege to continue beyond any election. In order for civil rights laws to achieve their ultimate goal and purpose they must be expanded to ensure more protections for more people.

I will start by stating that an overwhelming number of Americans who find themselves in the majority population may become subjects of harassment. So, while the civil rights laws originated based on the minority experience, and, as a result, most complaints derived from these populations, members of the majority must keep in mind that civil rights laws were meant for their protection also, and that they should not feel afraid, intimidated, or guilty for taking advantage of a system that was meant to protect them too. Majority populations must also note that due to the ever-present reality of shifts in the population, the civil rights law was meant to protect any group which may become a minority. 

In 2017, as the director for a human rights agency, I hosted a rally in solidarity with the march in Charlottesville against hate and bigotry. Since then, I have led the charge on various forms of legislation in expansion of the civil rights law to ensure everyone feels welcomed. This is the same type of energy I intend to bring with me to D.C. on behalf of the American people. 

In determining the next stage for civil rights, we must first understand that human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable. Treating each other with fairness and equality must be purposeful and affirmative. Each day we must rise, look at ourselves in the mirror, and believe that just because someone is different from us, we can choose to treat them equally and fairly and give them just as much opportunity as we would have given to someone who we believe is similar to us. As easy as it may sound, it remains difficult for some to do, so for the sake of collective human progress and the nation’s continued peace, the civil rights law compels us to do what is fair, especially for those who have controversial belief systems. 

After a long history of racism and segregation in the United States, President Lyndon B. Johnson effectively used appeals to Christian ethics to garner the support he needed to enact the civil rights law. He was bold enough to ask where in the ethic was there justification for killing children in a church in Alabama or denying equal education...or barring fathers and mothers from competing for jobs that would feed and clothe their families? It just didn’t make sense. So, on July 2, 1964, President Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act which outlawed discrimination on every front. Nearly sixty years later, we cannot forget the blood, the sacrifices, the sweat and tears that went into its enactment. We cannot forget the great strides and doors the law opened for minorities everywhere, but now we are in need of expansion. The next level of civil rights includes more protections and rights for the LGBTQ+ community (See LGBTQ), job seekers, and housing voucher holders. 

It also includes research and investigation into how funding and services are being distributed to low-income and minority neighborhoods. Every law, policy, rule, regulation, and agreement governing any parts of these United States and its territories should be thoroughly scrutinized for discrimination.


In 2016, one of our senators, Senator Todd Young, received a 2% rating from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), which supports gay rights. That’s because Mr. Young pretends not to hold a position on same-sex marriage meanwhile he has no problem voting against laws like the Maloney Amendment (2016) which would have protected same sex individuals from discrimination in the military. In our time period, this is embarrassing and reflects a shameful past. 

There are millions of future veterans serving in our military right now who identify as members of the LGBTQ community. One should wonder how Mr. Young, a veteran himself could possibly reconcile his decision to withhold discrimination protections from people who were currently serving in the armed forces and may be veterans now. Currently, it is still not clear if either of our senators believes sexual orientation and gender identity should be protected classes. 

Religious organizations are already allowed to discriminate against the LGBTQ+ community in the civil rights law due to religious freedom. That said, the LGBTQ+ community should have civil rights in order to be able to simply live and work peacefully where they desire. I fail to see how providing members of the LGBTQ+ community with basic rights prevents anyone from practicing their religion. If a person believes that the lifestyle is sinful, then that is their prerogative. 

Job Seekers and Discrimination  

Growing the American workforce is vital to our country’s prosperity and growth. We must advocate for policies and practices to ensure that Americans of all backgrounds are able to more fully develop and profit from their talents. Therefore, we must recognize our need for hiring process reform to aid in the elimination of discrimination and long waiting periods in the hiring process.

Too many individuals are able to work in this country and still cannot get jobs because they are being discriminated against in the beginning of the hiring process due to name discrimination, where they live, word-of-mouth (private) recruitment, and employers who use other application information to indicate one’s race or political view.

Enough is enough!

Upon my election to Congress, I intend to work with my colleagues on implementing and updating new hiring systems for the American people which will prevent United States employers from accessing any information which may indicate an applicant’s race, sex, religion, age, etc., in the hiring process. Employees are generally protected from discrimination once they acquire a job thanks to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. My proposal goes much deeper than that by taking steps to prevent discrimination in the first place. 

The Tax Cuts & Jobs Act of December 2017 (TCJA) promised better job opportunities for workers across America. Nothing could be further from the truth as the former administration did nothing to address hiring process discrimination. Even before the pandemic, the real unemployment rate was increasing because those who wanted full-time jobs couldn't seem to get them and when they did the jobs were always low-wage and without insurance and benefits.

In December 2019, the Brookings Institution, a non-partisan research foundation conducted a study that showed nearly half of U.S. workers (44%) were employed in low-wage jobs that made it impossible for them to get ahead. 

According to the Russell Sage Foundation, a foundation which dedicates itself to “strengthening the methods, data, and theoretical core of the social sciences in order to better understand societal problems and develop informed responses,” employer’s choices have contributed largely to a declining labor-force in the United States over the past four decades.

We must do everything we can to add to America’s workforce, not take away from it, and that means ensuring equality for all, especially for women. I am a strong advocate for the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) designed to guarantee equal legal rights for all American citizens regardless of sex. Women deserve equal pay for equal work and the ability to be included in the draft if they so desire. I also promise to address accommodation requirements on a federal level for pregnant women. 

Additionally, the EEOC must be expanded to protect more workers who work for employers with a lesser number of employees and address youth discrimination which is also a form of age discrimination. The ADA should require all cities to have a designated ADA Coordinator and a rule that allows all complaints to be enforced by the local government if necessary. Finally, Title VI should include protections for all the protected classes (not just for race, color, or national origin). 

Housing Voucher Recipients 

As a member of the U.S. Senate, I promise to create a team of experts that will help me introduce legislation that will help redefine what it means to make it easier for all Americans to acquire a home wherever they want it.

Indiana's senators have failed all Hoosiers by allowing them to be economically discriminated against when applying for housing.  For example, Senator Todd Young boasts of his efforts introducing the Family Stability and Opportunity Vouchers Act. However, the act fails to address income-based discrimination which allows landlords to continually discriminate against housing voucher (Section 8) recipients and keep them out of real “opportunity zones” which are really affluent neighborhoods where there are good schools.

Section 8 voucher recipients should be able to use their vouchers wherever they want. The myth that low-income individuals reduce property values and are irresponsible is a self-fulfilling prophecy. As it stands, Indiana is one of many states without income-based anti-discrimination laws making it possible for landlords to disparately impact many lives in a negative way. 

I’m not interested in blanket policies that sound good but actually do very little to make things better for all Americans. If our senators can’t properly make a real effort to tackle income-based discrimination in housing, then they should step aside and yield to the fully capable. This type of discrimination can only be handled by experts in the field and those equipped to tackle it. I promise to work closely with experts in the field and across the aisle to create legislation that makes it against the law to deny housing voucher recipients a home where they want it. Let’s get to work! 

Paid for By Hoosiers for Haneefah 
Powered by - Political Websites
Close Menu