About the AG

  • Subscribe to the AG's RSS Feed
  • Join the AG's FaceBook
  • Follow the AG on Twitter
  • View the AG's YouTube Channel
  • View the AG's Tumblr Page

Chapter 1 - Racial, Ethnic, Religious, and Minority Violence

Violence inflicted because of the particular victim's perceived or actual race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age, or physical or mental disability is an all too common occurrence in some areas of California. So-called hate groups too often transform their rhetoric to action. Cross-burnings, the desecration of our places of worship, gay-bashings, and other such hateful criminal activities have no place in our society. To eliminate such violence, California has specific laws, both civil and criminal, which are designed to protect people from this type of violence and to punish severely those who engage in such offensive behavior.

The Ralph Civil Rights Act

The Ralph Civil Rights Act, Civil Code section 51.7, addresses the repugnance of racial, ethnic, religious, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, and political violence in California by providing civil and administrative remedies for those who are victims of this type of violence, or of violence directed against any particular class of persons.

The Ralph Act provides that all persons within this state have the right to be free from violence committed against themselves or their property because of their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, (1) age, disability, position in a labor dispute, or because another person perceives them to have one or more of these characteristics. (2) The Ralph Act also declares that the prohibited types of discrimination listed in section 51.7 are merely illustrative. This means that if someone threatens you or commits a violent act against you because you possess, or are perceived to possess, a characteristic which is shared by members of any identifiable group, you may have a claim under this law.

The rights provided for in the Ralph Act can be enforced by an aggrieved individual (i.e., a victim), the Attorney General, your local district attorney, or your local city attorney. If you, as an aggrieved person, seek to enforce your Ralph Act rights, you can either file a private lawsuit in the appropriate court, (3) or you can file a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). (4) The addresses, telephone numbers and web sites of the DFEH district offices are listed in the next chapter.

If you choose to file a complaint with the DFEH, you must do so no later than one year after your Ralph Act rights have been violated. If your claim is accepted, the DFEH will investigate your claim and will attempt to settle your case. If settlement is not achieved, you may file a lawsuit, or the DFEH may institute an administrative action with the Fair Employment and Housing Commission (FEHC), which conducts hearings and issues administrative decisions. If you choose to file a private lawsuit, either on your own or after filing a complaint with the DFEH, you may wish to retain your own attorney.

Where there is a reasonable basis to believe that a person or group of persons is engaged in a pattern or practice of violating rights secured by the Ralph Act, the Attorney General, your local district attorney and city attorney are all authorized to file a lawsuit immediately to protect the rights secured by this Act. (5) If you have evidence of such a pattern or practice, you should contact the Attorney General Office's Public Inquiry Unit at the telephone number or address noted at the beginning of this pamphlet, your local district attorney, or your local city attorney.

Persons who are successful in enforcing their Ralph Act rights in court are entitled to awards for money lost and emotional distress, as well as a civil penalty of $25,000, and reasonable attorney fees. (6) Court orders banning the unlawful behavior and a civil penalty for the victim can be obtained by a victim, the Attorney General, or your local district or city attorney if a violation of the Ralph Act can be established in court. (7)

Back To Top

The Bane Civil Rights Act

The Bane Civil Rights Act, Civil Code section 52.1 and Penal Code section 422.6 et seq., prohibits violence or the threat of violence based on grounds such as race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, political affiliation, sex, sexual orientation, age disability or position in a labor dispute.

Civil Code section 52.1 protects all people within this state from interference with their free exercise or enjoyment of the rights guaranteed them by the state or the United States. If the interference is by means of speech alone, however, no remedy will be available to you under the Bane Act unless it can be shown that the speech itself threatened violence against you; that you reasonably feared violence would be committed against you or your property because of the speech; and that the person threatening violence had the apparent ability to carry out the threat. (8)

If anyone interferes with your rights under this law (9) by threats, intimidation, or coercion, you may be able to get a court order banning this behavior and be awarded for money lost and emotional distress, as well as a $25,000 civil penalty and attorney's fees. (10) The Attorney General, your local district attorney or city attorney may also seek court orders to ban the unlawful behavior and other appropriate relief. (11)

If you believe you have a claim under this Act, you may either file a private lawsuit or contact the Attorney General's Office, your local district attorney or city attorney. The court may grant an injunction prohibiting further intimidating or coercive behavior. Any violation of this order is a misdemeanor and may result in fines or imprisonment. (12) If a judgment is awarded in your favor in a private lawsuit, you may receive reasonable attorney's fees as well. (13)

Penal Code section 422.6. In addition to civil remedies, the Bane Act establishes criminal remedies. Penal Code section 422.6, subdivision (a), makes it unlawful to, by force or threat of force, oppress, injure, intimidate, or interfere with any other person in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right secured by the state or federal government because of the other person's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation or because it is perceived that the victim has one or more of these characteristics. If the force or threat of force is through speech alone, it must be shown that the speech itself threatened violence against a specific person or group of persons, and that the accused had the apparent ability to carry out the violence.

Subdivision (b) of this Penal Code Section prohibits the knowing destruction of real or personal property of any other person in order to intimidate or interfere with the free exercise or enjoyment of rights provided under federal and state constitutions and laws because of the other person's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation. Violations of these Penal Code sections are punishable by a jail term and/or a fine.

Penal Code section 422.7 provides that misdemeanors committed because of the victim's race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation may, under certain circumstances, be punishable as felonies (except in the case of a person punished under Penal Code section 422.6).

Penal Code section 422.75 provides for sentencing enhancements of one to three years for certain bias-motivated felonies against the above groups, or against persons perceived to belong to one or more of these groups. Penal Code section 422.75 also provides for heightened penalties of one to four years if more than one felony hate crime was committed at the same time, the offender had a prior hate crime conviction, a firearm was used, or if the hate crime was committed on certain types of public or private property (i.e., schools, libraries, community centers, meeting halls, places of worship, offices of advocacy groups, etc.).

Penal code section 422.76 defines gender for purposes of various hate crime statutes to mean the victim's actual sex or the defendant's perception of the victim's sex. This includes the defendant's perception of the victim's identity, appearance, or behavior, whether or not the characteristics are traditionally associated with the victim's sex at birth.

Penal code section 422.9, subdivision (a), provides that it is a misdemeanor to violate an order issued pursuant to Civil Code section 52.1, subdivision (a) or (b), the civil portion of the Bane Act. Such a misdemeanor is punishable by up to six months in jail or $1,000 or both.

Penal code section 422.9, subdivision (b), provides up to one year in jail for a person previously convicted of violating an order issued pursuant to Civil Code section 52.1, subdivision (a) or (b), on a different charge.

Penal code section 422.9, subdivision (c), gives county prosecuting agencies the primary responsibility for enforcing orders issued pursuant to Civil Code section 52.1.

Penal code section 422.95, subdivisions (a) and (b), provide that if a person is granted probation for any Penal Code section 422.6, 422.7, 422.75, 594.3 or 11411 offenses, the court may order the defendant to complete an available class or program on racial or ethnic sensitivity or other similar training in civil rights as a condition of probation; to make payments or other compensation to a community-based program or local agency that provides services to victims of hate violence; and to reimburse the victim for reasonable costs of counseling and other expenses. Any payments or compensation are in addition to restitution payments required under Penal Code section 1203.04.

Penal code section 422.95, subdivision (c), states that it is the intent of the Legislature to encourage counties, cities, and school districts to establish education and training programs to prevent violations of civil rights and hate crimes.

If you are the victim of or a witness to any of the activities described by these Penal Code sections, contact your local law enforcement agency. If criminal action is taken and you are a victim, you may pursue injunctive relief on your own, independent of any action taken by the Attorney General, district or city attorneys. The Bane Act provides that victims may pursue either private lawsuits or criminal prosecutions, or both. (14)

Back To Top

Local Human Relations Commissions

Government Code section 50260 et seq. authorizes and encourages cities and counties to establish local human relations commissions to preserve peace among citizens of different races, religions, and national origins. If your community has such a commission, you may wish to seek its assistance to address hate violence. Below is a list of local human relations commissions.

California Association of Human Relations Organizations (CAHRO)
1426 Fillmore Ave., Suite 216
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 775-2341, (415) 775-2342 fax

Website: http://www.cahro.org/

Back To Top

Human Relations Commissions by Counties

COUNTY ADDRESS TELEPHONE NO.
Alameda County Human Relations Commission 310 45th Street
Oakland, CA 94609
(510) 596-0405
Contra Costa County Human Relations Commission 2020 N. Broadway, #203A
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
(925) 646-6160
El Dorado County Round Table on Human Relations 330 Fair Lane
Placerville, CA 95667
(530) 621-5390
Humboldt County Human Rights Commission 535 5th Street
Eureka, CA 95501
(707) 268-2548
County of Kern Human Relations Commission 1115 Truxton Avenue
Bakersfield, CA 93301
(805) 868-3941
or (805) 868-3944
Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission 320 West Temple, Room 1184
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 974-7611
Fax (213) 687-4251
Marin County Human Rights Commission Marin County Civic Center
San Rafael, CA 94101
(415) 499-6189
Orange County Human Relations Commission 1300 S. Grand, Bldg. B
Santa Ana, CA 92705
(714) 567-7470
Human Rights and Fair Housing Commission of the City and County of Sacramento 1112 I Street, #250
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 444-6903
Human Rights Commission of San Francisco 25 Van Ness, #800
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 252-2500
Santa Clara County Human Relations Commission Office of Human Relations
70 W. Hedding
San Jose, CA 95110
(408) 299-2206
Sonoma County Commission on Human Rights 2300 Country Center Drive, B-167
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
(707) 527-2693
County of Santa Barbara Human Relations Commission 105 E. Anapamu St., #406
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(805) 884-6802
Fax (805) 884-6801

Back To Top

Human Relations Commissions by Cities

CITY ADDRESS TELEPHONE NO.
City of Alameda Social Services Human Relations Board 2263 Santa Clara Ave.
Alameda, CA 94501
(510) 749-5811
Berkeley Human Welfare and Community Action Commission 2201 Dwight Way, 2nd Floor
Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 665-3475
Fax (510) 644-8678
City of Carson Human Relations Commission 701 E. Carson Street
Carson, CA 90745
(310) 952-1729
City of Chula Vista Human Relations Commission 654 Sea Vale St.
Chula Vista, CA 91910
(619) 427-5456
Claremont Committee on Human Relations Human Services Department
840 Indian Hill Blvd.
Claremont, CA 91711
(909) 399-5495
City of Colton
Neighborhood Services
670 Colton Avenue
Colton, CA 92324
(909) 370-6155
Compton City Human Relations Commission 205 S. Willowbrook Ave.
Compton, CA 90220
(310) 605-5500
Concord Human Relations Commission Concord Leisure Services Department
1948 Colfax St.
Concord, CA 94520
(925) 671-3461
Costa Mesa Human Relations Committee P.O. Box 1200
Costa Mesa, CA 92628-1200
(714) 754-5667
Human Services and Park Commission of Culver City Department of Human
Services Culver City Hall
9770 Culver Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232-0507
(310) 253-6655
City of Davis Human Relations Commission Davis Police Department
226 F Street
Davis, CA 95616
(530) 756-3740
ext. 7446
El Cerrito Human Relations Commission 10890 San Pablo Avenue
El Cerrito, CA 94530
(510) 215-4304
Fremont Human Relations Commission 2901 Barrington Terrace
Fremont, CA 94536
(510) 797-1050
City of Fresno Human Relations Commission 2600 Fresno Street
Room 2162N
Fresno, CA 93721
(559) 498-1646
Gardena Human Relations Commission 1700 West 162nd Street
Gardena, CA 90247
(310) 217-9500
Glendale Human Relations Coalition 613 E. Broadway, #200
Glendale, CA 91206
(818) 548-4844
Hayward Community Relations Commission 777 B St.
Hayward, CA 94541
(510) 583-4227
Heartland Human Relations and Fair Housing Association 4710 4th St., Suite 600
La Mesa, CA 91941
(619) 460-2744
Hemet Human Relations Commission P.O. Box 3036
Hemet, CA 92546
(909) 765-2300
Fax (909) 765-2337
Huntington Beach Human Relations Task Force 2000 Main Street
Huntington Beach, CA 92648
(714) 536-5577
Inglewood Human Affairs Commission 1 Manchester Blvd.,
9th Floor
Inglewood, CA 90301
(310) 412-5301
City of Livermore Human Services Commission 1052 South Livermore Ave.
Livermore, CA 94550
(925) 373-5149
Long Beach Human Relations Commission 2525 Grand Avenue
Long Beach, CA 90815
(562) 570-4001
Human Relations Commission of the City of Los Angeles 200 N. Main St., City Hall
East, #700
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 485-4495
City of Modesto Human Relations Commission City Manager's Office
801 11th Street
P.O. Box 84
Modesto, CA 95353
(209) 577-5463
Monterey Park Community Relations Commission 320 W. Newmark Avenue
Monterey Park, CA 91754
(626) 307-1387
City of Oakland Human Relations Commission 1 Frank Ogawa Plaza
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 238-7298
Community Relations Commission of the City of Oxnard Human Services Program
305 W. Third Street
Oxnard, CA 93030
(805) 385-7947
Palm Springs Human Rights Commission Human Resources Department
P.O. Box 2743
Palm Springs, CA 92263
(760) 323-8337
Palo Alto Human Relations Commission Cubberly Community Center
4000 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto, CA 94303
(650) 329-2571
Pasadena Human Relations Commission 100 N. Garfield Ave.
Pasadena, CA 91109
(626) 744-4000
Pinole Human Relations Commission 2131 Pear Street
Pinole, California 94564
(510) 724-9000
Pittsburg Community Advisory Commission 65 Civic Avenue
Pittsburg, CA 94565
(925) 252-4959
City of Pleasanton Human Services Commission P.O. Box 520
Pleasanton, CA 94566-0802
(925) 931-5006
Fax (925) 931-5488
City of Pomona Community Life Commission 505 S. Garvey
P.O. Box 660
Pomona, CA 91769
(909) 620-2438
Human Relations Council of Pomona Valley 913 W. Bonita Ave.
P.O. Box 1023
Claremont, CA 91711
(909) 949-0883
Rialto Human Relations Commission 150 South Palm
Rialto, CA 92376
(909) 820-2519
City of Richmond Human Relations and Affirmative Action Commission 2600 Barrett Avenue, #301
Richmond, CA 94804
(510) 307-8017
Riverside Human Relations Commission 3900 Main St.
Riverside, CA 92522
(909) 826-5709
or (909) 826-5302
San Bernardino Human Relations Commission 300 North "D" Street
San Bernardino, CA 92418
(909) 384-5133
ext. 3618
San Clemente Human Affairs Committee 100 Avenida Presidio
San Clemente, CA 92672
(949) 361-8322
San Diego Human Relations Commission 1200 3rd Street, Suite 916
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 236-6420
San Jose Human Relations Commission 801 N. First St., Rm. 460
San Jose, CA 95110
(408) 293-8300
City of San Leandro Human Relations Commission 300 Estudillo Ave.
San Leandro, CA 94577
(510) 577-3464
City of San Luis Obispo Human Relations Commission Parks and Recreation Department

1341 Nipomo Street
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
(805) 781-7296
Santa Ana Human Relations Commission Parks, Recreation, and
Community Services
888 West Santa Ana Blvd.
Suite 200
Santa Ana, CA 92701
(714) 245-8022
Santa Clarita Human Relations Forum 23920 Valencia Blvd., #308
Santa Clarita, CA 91355
(661) 255-4918
or (661) 255-4929
City of Seaside Human Relations Commission City Hall
P.O. Box 810
440 Harcourt
Seaside, CA 93955
(408) 899-6202
Union City Human Relations Commission 34009 Alvarado-Niles Road
Union City, CA 94587
(510) 471-3232
City of Vallejo Human Relations Commission P.O. Box 3068ZZ
Vallejo, CA 94590
(707) 648-4435
West Hollywood Human Services Commission 8300 Santa Monica Boulevard
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(323) 848-6471

Back To Top

Miscellaneous State Penal Statutes Which Address Racial, Ethnic, Religious, and Minority Violence

Listed below are some of the other key Penal Code statutes which have been enacted to curb racial, ethnic, religious, and minority violence in California. If you are the victim of or a witness to any of the activities described by these statutes, immediately contact your local law enforcement or police agency:

  1. Penal code section 136.2 provides for protective orders. The district attorney or city attorney may seek protective orders to protect against further harm to or intimidation of hate crimes victims and witnesses by the accused perpetrators.
  2. Once criminal charges are filed under the Bane Civil Rights Act, or under any other criminal statute, hate crime victims have the right to a court order prohibiting any additional harassment from, or any communication or contact with the accused perpetrator.
  3. Penal code section 139 creates a felony when someone already convicted of a felony communicates a credible threat to use force or violence to witnesses, victims, informants or their immediate families. The penalty is one year in county jail or two to four years in state prison.
  4. Penal code section 140 creates a misdemeanor when someone communicates a credible threat to witnesses, victims, informants or their immediate families to use force or violence. This does not require that the perpetrator already be convicted of a related crime. The penalty is one year in county jail or two to four years in state prison.
  5. Penal code section 185 provides that it is a misdemeanor for any person to wear any mask, false whiskers or any personal disguise (whether complete or partial) in order to evade or escape discovery, recognition, or identification in the commission of any public offense.

  6. Penal code section 186.21 declares that it is the right of every person, regardless of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, or handicap, to be protected from fear, intimidation, and physical harm caused by theactivities of violent groups and individuals. (This is part of the "California Street Terrorism Enforcement and Prevention Act," enacted in 1988.)
  7. Penal code section 190.03 provides that a person who commits first-degree murder shall be punished by life imprisonment in state prison without the possibility of parole if the defendant intentionally killed the victim because of the victim's actual or perceived disability, gender, or sexual orientation.
  8. Penal code section 190.2, subdivision (a)(16), provides for the death penalty or life imprisonment without the possibility of parole when a person is intentionally murdered because of his or her race, color, religion, nationality, or country of origin.
  9. Penal code section 302 makes it a misdemeanor willfully to disturb a group which has met for religious worship with unnecessary noise, profanity, or behavior which is rude and/or indecent.
  10. Penal code section 538c makes it a misdemeanor for any person who attaches or inserts an unauthorized advertisement in a newspaper offered for sale or made available for free and who redistributes it or has the intent to redistribute it to the public.
  11. Penal code section 594 makes it a crime to deface, damage, or destroy another's property. This is either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending primarily on the amount of damage. This statute may be applied to racial, ethnic, religious, gender, disability and political violence against property.
  12. Penal code section 594.1 makes it unlawful for a minor to purchase or any person or entity other than a parent to provide a minor with aerosol paint containers in excess of six ounces. A court can order community service, graffiti removal or counseling in the event of a violation of this section.
  13. Penal code section 594.3 makes it a crime knowingly to vandalize a church, synagogue, or any building owned and occupied by a religious educational institution, or knowingly to vandalize any other place primarily and regularly used as a place of worship. This can be either a felony or misdemeanor. It is a felony if the vandalism is committed because of the race, color, religion or national origin of an individual or group and in order to intimidate and deter those persons from exercising their religious beliefs.
  14. Penal code section 640.2 makes it a misdemeanor to stamp, print, place or insert any writing in or on any box, package or other container containing a consumer product offered for sale.
  15. Penal code section 1170.75 makes it possible to impose higher sentences for felonies committed because of the victim's actual or perceived race, color, religion, nationality, country of origin, ancestry, disability, gender, or sexual orientation.
  16. Penal code section 1170.8 makes it possible to impose higher sentences for a robbery, or an assault with a weapon or by any means likely to produce great bodily injury, committed against a person while that person is in a church, synagogue, or any other place primarily and regularly used as a place of worship, or for arson of a place primarily used as a place of worship
  17. Penal code section 1170.85 makes it possible to impose higher sentences for a felony if the victim is particularly vulnerable, or unable to defend himself or herself, due to age or significant disability. Penal Code section 667.9 provides specific term enhancements for repeat offenders who commit certain crimes against persons whom the perpetrator knows is disabled, persons 65 years or older, or persons under the age of 14.
  18. Penal code section 11410 (terrorism) expresses the Legislature's intent that it is the right of every person, regardless of his or her race, color, creed, religion, gender, or national origin, to be secure and protected from fear, intimidation and physical harm caused by the activities of violent groups and individuals. This section also contains the Legislature's express finding that the advocacy of unlawful violent acts by groups against other persons or groups where death and/or great bodily injury is likely, is not constitutionally protected, poses a threat to public order and safety, and should be subject to criminal and civil sanctions.
  19. Penal code section 11411 makes it a misdemeanor to burn or desecrate a cross or other religious symbol, or to display a sign, mark, symbol, or emblem (e.g., a Nazi swastika) on another's private property, or on the property of a primary, junior high or high school, for the purpose of terrorizing (i.e., causing a person to fear for his other personal safety) the owner or occupant of the private property or any person associated with the school.
  20. Penal code section 11412 makes it a felony for a person to attempt to cause or to cause another, by means of a direct, personal threat of unlawful injury upon any person or property, to refrain from exercising his or her religion, or engaging in a religious service. It must reasonably appear to the recipient of the threat that the threat could be carried out.
  21. Penal code section 11413 makes it a felony for a person to explode, ignite or to attempt to explode or ignite, any destructive device, or to commit arson in any church, temple, synagogue, or other place of worship, any offices or buildings where counsel representing groups working for or against abortion meet or organize, any place in which a presentation regarding abortion is conducted, any bookstore or public or private library, any courthouse, the home or office of a judicial officer, any building occupied by probation officers, and any private property if the property was targeted because of the race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender, or sexual orientation of the owner or occupant of the property.
  22. Penal code section 11460 makes it a misdemeanor for two or more persons to assemble as a paramilitary organization for the purpose of practicing with weapons. This section also makes it a misdemeanor for any individual to demonstrate to another how to make or use any firearm, explosive, or destructive device while knowing or having reason to know that this device will be used in an unlawful manner for purposes of civil disorder.
  23. Penal code section 12303.2 makes it a felony "recklessly or maliciously" to have in one's possession an explosive or destructive device at or near any public place, including churches.
  24. Penal code section 13519.4 requires the Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission to train peace officers in racial and cultural diversity, including gender and sexual orientation issues.

Back To Top

Hate Crimes Reporting

Effective January 1, 2001, Education Code section 233 requires the State Board of Education to revise the school curriculum to include human relations education, with the aim of fostering an appreciation of the diversity of California's population and discouraging the development of discriminatory attitudes and practices. Education Code section 32228 provides that public schools should have access to supplemental resources to combat bias on the bases contained in Government Code section 12926 of the Fair Employment and Housing Act (see Chapter 2, Employment), and to prevent and respond to acts of hate violence. At the same time, Education Code section 32228.1 requires school districts that receive funds under the School Safety and Violence Prevention Act to certify that funds will be used for one or more of a variety of purposes, including, but not limited to, preventing and responding to acts of hate violence and bias related incidents. Effective also January 1, 2001, Education Code section 44253.3 adds course work on human relations to the curriculum for a certificate to provide certain services to limited-English-proficient pupils. As of January 1, 2001, Penal Code sections 628, 628.1, 628.2, and 628.5 require the Department of Education to report on hate-motivated incidents and hate crimes.

Penal code section 13023 requires local law enforcement agencies to report to the Department of Justice any criminal act where there is reasonable cause to believe the crime was motivated by the victim's race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or physical or mental disability. The Department of Justice is required to issue an annual report on July 1st of every year concerning such crimes.

Penal code section 13515.25, effective January 1, 2001, requires that the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training establish a continuing education course relating to law enforcement interaction with developmentally disabled and mentally ill persons.

Penal code section 13519.6 provides that the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training shall develop guidelines and a course of instruction and training in hate crimes for law enforcement officers who are employed as peace officers or enrolled in a training academy for law enforcement officers. Hate crime for purposes of this section means any act of intimidation, harassment, physical force, or the threat of physical force, directed against any person, or family, or their property or advocate, motivated either in whole or in part by the hostility to the real or perceived ethnic background, national origin, religious belief, gender, age, disability or sexual orientation of that person, with the intent to cause fear and intimidation.

Pursuant to the federal Hate Crimes Statistics Act of 1990, 28 U.S.C. § 534 et seq., the United States Department of Justice collects data on hate crimes.

Back To Top

Education Code Provisions Regarding Hate Crimes

In 1994, the Legislature enacted the California Schools Hate Violence Reduction Act of 1995. This Act requires the State Board of Education to do the following if private funds are available, and if requested by the Superintendent of Public Instruction:

  1. adopt policies and guidelines to prevent and respond to acts of violence;
  2. revise existing state curricula, frameworks and guidelines to include human relations education;
  3. establish guidelines for use in teacher and administrator in-service training programs:
    1. to promote an appreciation of diversity;
    2. to discourage discriminatory attitudes and practices among pupils, teachers, administrators, and counselors; and
    3. to enable teachers and administrators to prevent and respond to acts of hate violence;
  4. revise guidelines previously adopted by the Board to include procedures to prevent and respond to acts of hate violence; and
  5. encourage teachers to impress upon the minds of pupils the meaning of equality and human dignity and to foster an environment that is free from discriminatory attitudes, practices, events, or activities, in order to prevent acts of hate violence. (Ed. Code, §§ 201 and 233.5.)

Among the grounds for the suspension or expulsion of a pupil in grades four through 12 is now the commission of acts of hate violence. (Ed. Code, §§ 48900.3 and 48915.)

Education Code section 233.8 provides that effective January 1, 2001, the State Department of Education, subject to available funding, is required to provide training to school district personnel in identifying and determining hate violence on school campuses. Pupils and teachers may participate in a grant program focused on fostering ethnic sensitivity, overcoming racism and prejudice, and countering hatred and intolerance, subject to available funding.

Back To Top

California's Victims of Crime Program

Under Government Code sections 13959-13969.4, some crime victims may be eligible for financial assistance for unreimbursed expenses resulting from the crime.

For information and assistance, contact:

California Department of Justice
Attorney General's Office
Office of Victims' Services
1300 I Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
Toll Free Number: (877) 433-9069 (in California)

Back To Top

Footnotes

  1. Sexual orientation means heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality. (Civ. Code, § 51.7, subd. (b).) Back to link 1
  2. Civil Code section 51.7, subdivision (a). This section by its terms does not apply to statements concerning positions in a labor dispute which are made during otherwise lawful labor picketing. Back to link 2
  3. Civil Code section 52, subdivision (b). Back to link 3
  4. Civil Code section 52, subdivision (f), and Government Code sections 12930 and 12948. Back to link 4
  5. Civil Code section 52, subdivision (c). Back to link 5
  6. Civil Code section 52, subdivision (b). Back to link 6
  7. Legislation effective January 1, 2001, clarified that an award of a civil penalty of $25,000 to the person denied the right provided by Civil Code section 51.7 (Ralph Act) is authorized in any action brought by the person denied the right, or by the Attorney General, a district attorney or a city attorney. (Civ. Code, § 52, subds. (b)(2), (c)(3) .) Code of Civil Procedure section 527.6 provides alternative methods for securing injunctive relief in situations involving racial, ethnic, religious, and minority violence, or other forms of harassment where substantial emotional distress is caused to the victim. Code of Civil Procedure section 527.7 provides that an injunction can be obtained against a group which is meeting and taking substantial action in furtherance of the commission of acts of violence if it can be shown that the group will probably engage in those acts in the future. Back to link 7
  8. Civil Code section 52.1, subdivision (j). Back to link 8
  9. This includes the right to be free from racial, ethnic, religious, gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, and political violence established by the Ralph Act. Back to link 9
  10. Civil Code sections 52.1, subdivision (b), and 52, subdivision (b). Back to link 10
  11. Civil Code section 52.1, subdivisions (a), (c)(3). Back to link 11
  12. Civil Code section 52.1, subdivision (i), and Penal Code section 422.9. Back to link 12
  13. Civil Code section 52.1, subdivision (h). Back to link 13
  14. Civil Code section 52.1, subdivision (g). Back to link 14

Back To Top

Megan's Law

California Registered Sex Offender Database

Search Now

Megan's Law information is also available in these languages:

Site Navigation

Translate Website

  • Google™ Translation Disclaimer

This Google™ translation feature is provided for informational purposes only.

The Office of the Attorney General is unable to guarantee the accuracy of this translation and is therefore not liable for any inaccurate information resulting from the translation application tool.

Please consult with a translator for accuracy if you are relying on the translation or are using this site for official business.

If you have any questions please contact:Bilingual Services Program at (916) 324-5482

A copy of this disclaimer can also be found on our Disclaimer page.

Select a Language Below / Seleccione el Idioma Abajo

Close this box or use the [ X ]