DC Office of Human Rights Newsletter | Volume XXXIII | July 2021
Celebrate Nelson Mandela International Day July 18th!
Nelson Mandela International Day is an annual day honoring the contributions, humanitarianism and activism of Nelson Mandela on July 18th, his birthday. OHR encourages you to channel Mandela's values and principles into action. This day is a great opportunity to volunteer or provide community service in his honor.

By no means is this list exhaustive, but here are a few organizations to think about volunteering for:

When sharing on social media, be sure to use the hashtag #MandelaDay or #MandelaDay2021.

"No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart." - Nelson Mandela
Director's Note
Dear DC neighbors and friends,

We're in July and it has been over a year since the pandemic shut down our amazing city DC. Thank you for your hard work and resilience and now we are back in action as a city and “DC” is open again. As we start interacting with each other in person, going back to work sites, eating at restaurants, experiencing DC's vibrant night life, it is important to remember that you have rights. 

It may take us some time to get back into a pre-pandemic groove. You and I may have to shake off some rust, dust off that alarm clock and take some time to get acclimated, but that doesn't mean discrimination should or will be tolerated. There will undoubtedly be some challenges returning to normal, but discrimination in any form has no place in our city.
Whether that looks like being harassed at work or barred entry into an establishment because of a protected trait, I'm here to remind you that the Office of Human Rights is here for you if you experience illegal discrimination.

If you believe you have been discriminated against unlawfully, please, please, please file a complaint with our office so we can look into the incident. Our services are free of cost and are 100 percent confidential. DC is a vibrant, inclusive and diverse city and I know we will bounce back from this pandemic even stronger. Let's remember to take care of each other on this journey or re-opening and recovery.

In service,
Monica Palacio, Director
Trait of the Month: Family Responsibilities
This protected trait makes it illegal to discriminate against someone based on them supporting a person in a dependent relationship, which includes, but is not limited to, your children, grandchildren and parents. For more information or to file a complaint, visit our website; ohr.dc.gov.
Youth Bullying Prevention during the COVID-19 pandemic

In partnership with Child Trends, OHR released its School Year 2019-2020 Youth Bullying Prevention Report.

The report details the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on education and implementation of the Youth Bullying Prevention Act of 2012 within the District of Columbia School system, as well as the overall state of bullying prevention and reviews the rate of incidents of bullying in District public and public charter schools.
Victory for Transgender Student
The Supreme Court left a decision in place that allowed a transgender student to use the bathroom corresponding to his gender identity. This is a victory for the LGBTQ community, with advocates fearful that the court was going to overturn a lower court opinion. Gavin Grimm (pictured), challenged his school board's decision to use either a unisex bathroom or a bathroom that corresponds to his biological gender at birth (female).

In DC, gender identity and expression is a protected trait. Furthermore, every single-stall bathroom in the District must be labeled gender neutral.
Photo courtesy of Buzzfeed News
Experience DC

There's a reason locals say they live in "DC" and not "Washington." That's because "the latest news from Washington" starts and ends with the federal government, not the city locals and visitors have come to love. DC is where you can access the world's best museums – many that are free to visit. DC is where you go to explore neighborhoods with homegrown businesses and diverse communities. DC is where you and your friends can make lasting memories from events, shows and moments you'll find no place else. Plan your next DC experience.
DC Office of Human Rights | 202.727.4559 | ohr.dc.gov