FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 4-9-22 - PHRC PROPOSES REGULATIONS TO DEFINE CLASS PROTECTIONS UNDER THE PHRA AND PFEOA_ (002).pdfLaura Argenbright, Director of Communications
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 9, 2022
PENNSYLVANIA HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION PROPOSES NEW REGULATIONS
Harrisburg – The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, the state's civil rights enforcement agency, today released proposed regulations that will help to enforce the rights granted in the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA) and the Pennsylvania Fair Educational Opportunities Act (PFEOA) for individuals to be free from discrimination because of their race, religious creed, or sex.
"The PHRC is continually looking for ways to improve protections for citizens of the Commonwealth," PHRC Commission Chair Joel Bolstein, Esq. said. "These regulations follow our policy guidance that started in 2016 and was adopted by the Commission in 2018. After the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on the Bostock case of 2020, we began drafting new regulations relative to these classes."
The PHRC enforces the PHRA and the PFEOA, which protect individuals from being discriminated against because of their protected class which include race, color, national origin, religious creed, sex, disability, age (40 and older) and use of a service animal. The PHRC is proposing new regulations to specifically define the protected classes of race, religious creed, and sex under the PHRA and the PFEOA. Under the PHRA, protections from discrimination are available in the context of employment, housing, public accommodations, and educational institutions. Under the PFEOA, protections are available for certain educational institutions.
The Pennsylvania Bulletin will publish the proposed regulations today, April 9, 2022. The public comment period will be open for thirty (30) calendar days -- from April 9, 2022, until May 9, 2022. Public comments may be submitted to: RA-HRREGSCOMMENT@pa.gov. The PHRC will respond to every comment received as part of the PHRC's final-form regulation.
The proposed regulations can be found at http://www.irrc.state.pa.us/regulations/RegSrchRslts.cfm?ID=3350.
In in its most recent fiscal year, PHRC docketed 3,860 cases alleging discrimination in the subject areas within its jurisdiction. A copy of PHRC's most recent Annual Report is available through this digital link: https://indd.adobe.com/view/de698fd2-6197-4949-81fb-be42482d0f2c.