The Michigan Civil Rights Commission and Department of Civil Rights
The Michigan Civil Rights Commission was created by the Michigan Constitution of 1963 to carry out the guarantees against discrimination articulated in Article I, Section 2. As further stated in Article V, Section 29, the state constitution directs the Commission to investigate alleged discrimination against any person because of religion, race, color or national origin and to "secure the equal protection of such civil rights without such discrimination." Public Acts 453 and 220 of 1976 and subsequent amendments have added sex, age, marital status, height, weight, arrest record, and physical and mental disabilities to the original four protected categories.
The Michigan Department of Civil Rights was established in 1965 to provide a staff complement to the policy making responsibilities of the Commission. In 1991, the Department was expanded when the Michigan Women's Commission was transferred from the Department of Management and Budget to this agency by Executive Order.
The Department of Civil Rights works to prevent discrimination through educational programs that promote voluntary compliance with civil rights laws and investigates and resolves discrimination complaints. It also provides information and services to businesses on diversity initiatives and equal employment law.
A complaint may be filed at any of the Department's offices if the alleged discrimination occurred within the past 180 days.