WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights released the report, Contemporary Civil Rights Challenges: A View from the State Advisory Committees. The report examines the work of the Commission’s 56 Advisory Committees, capturing data on persistent civil rights issues; identifying emerging ones; and capturing how perspectives differ cross the United States.
As part of the examination, the Commission developed a survey that was distributed to all Committee members in the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The survey collected members’ geographic information, civil rights priorities, challenges, and optional demographic information.
The survey results showed the most important civil rights topic to be race, followed by the administration of justice, and education. By comparison, the Puerto Rico Advisory Committee members indicated that voting rights was the most important civil rights topic in their territory.
This report was conducted to help shape a national conversation on current and future civil rights issues and identify civil rights priorities for the Commission, which may be helpful to policymakers, researchers, advocates, and other stakeholders. Moreover, this analysis sought to examine the breadth and depth of the qualitative landscape of work the Committees have amassed and will allow for insights on potential civil rights topics in the coming years.
“There is a great value advisory committees bring in meeting the mission we have,” said Commission Chair Norma V. Cantú. “Our advisory committees demonstrated incredible attention to the civil rights issues impacting the nation during the pandemic and the members of the advisory committees have been attentive sentinels and vocal advocates for effective enforcement of the civil rights of Americans.”