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Human Rights Commission Discrimination Complaint

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If you believe your rights under Ann Arbor's Non-Discrimination Ordinance have been violated, please complete and submit your complaint using this online form.

If you are not sure whether to submit a complaint or need other assistance, you can call the Human Rights Commission (HRC) at 734-794-6141, or e-mail the commission at [email protected]. Please provide your contact information if you would like to hear back from the HRC. Once your complaint has been received, it will be assigned to an HRC commissioner for review and you will hear from us shortly. Please be patient as all commissioners volunteer their services. If the situation described in your complaint changes substantially, you have any questions that need to be addressed before the HRC contacts you, or you do not hear from the commission within two weeks after you have submitted your complaint, please let us know.

Here is a summary of protections and relief available under Ann Arbor's Non-Discrimination Ordinance:

The ordinance prohibits unlawful discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations. Unlawful discrimination includes discrimination because of actual or perceived age, arrest record, color, disability, educational association, ethnicity, familial status, family responsibilities, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, height, HIV status, marital status, national origin, political beliefs, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, source of income, veteran status, victim of domestic violence or stalking, or weight.

HRC commissioners are responsible for investigating allegations of unlawful discrimination in Ann Arbor. Upon receipt of a discrimination complaint, the HRC will review the complaint, provide a copy of the complaint to the City Attorney's Office for their files, communicate with the complainant, and take appropriate action on the matter, including, but not limited to, one or more of the following:

  1. Mediating the matter between the involved parties;
  2. Referring the complainant to other local, state or federal entities for investigation and remedy;
  3. Referring the complaint to the City Attorney for further investigation and action;
  4. Dismissing the complaint, after review with the City Attorney, if the allegations do not constitute a violation of the Non-Discrimination Ordinance.

Complaints for human rights violations are best filed as soon as the complainant feels emotionally and/or physically able to do so safely. While the HRC will accept and review all complaints whenever filed, memories fade and evidence is sometimes lost, which can compromise the capacity to substantiate a claim. Also, the ability of the HRC to resolve, enforce and/or refer the complainant to other agencies or forums may be limited by the passage of time. For example, prosecution of a violation of a city ordinance is not possible if the complaint is filed more than two years after the incident occurred.

Please be aware that although the HRC is required to give the City Attorney copies of the complaints it receives, the City Attorney will be involved only where necessary and your privacy will be maintained wherever possible. Although all documents are subject to the Freedom of Information Act, confidential information will be redacted appropriately.

Complainants have the option of retaining a private attorney to pursue money damages or injunctive relief for violation of the Non-Discrimination Ordinance under a private cause of action.

Complainants may also wish to consider filing complaints with appropriate state, federal, or other local agencies. Deadlines for filing those complaints are neither extended nor otherwise changed by the filing of a complaint with the Human Rights Commission.

Complainant (The person who experienced the discrimination and is making the complaint)

Respondent (The person or organization you believe engaged in illegal discrimination)