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New York Civil Rights Lawyer

scale of justice on courtroom tableThe New York civil rights lawyers of The Sanders Firm staunchly advocate for those who have been discriminated against by government agencies, private employers, police officers, and other institutions.  We are firmly committed to protecting our clients against violations of the Civil Rights Act and other landmark legislation that was enacted to ensure equal protection for all New Yorkers, regardless of gender, sex, color, nation of origin, age, race, sexual orientation or place in society.

This state guards our residents with some of the nation’s most comprehensive civil rights laws. It is our mission at The Sanders Firm to ensure these rights remain intact.

New York civil rights laws protect against the following types of discrimination:

  • Citizenship status
  • Disability
  • Employment status
  • Prior arrests or record of convictions
  • Prior status as a victim of sex offenses or domestic violence
  • Cyber bullying

The court rooms, however, tell a different story. Between July 2010 and 2011, more than 2,240 civil rights lawsuits were brought against the NYPD, based on allegations of racial profiling, police brutality and other discrimination.

Since 2010, civil rights litigation in New York has been on the rise, as more residents are reporting a disturbing disregard of their constitutional privileges.

Civil rights violations in New York

One such example is the NYPD’s controversial “stop-and-frisk” policy, which violated the basic rights of thousands of New Yorkers, according to a 2013 ruling by a U.S. District Judge.

Judge Shira Scheindlin found that the country’s largest police department had been “illegally and systematically” singling out hundreds of Hispanics and African Americans under its racially discriminatory policy. The city is currently facing a federal class action suit regarding the stop-and-frisk program — filed by Latino and black New Yorkers who say they are now living in fear and terrified to leave their homes.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the NYPD stopped and interrogated 684,330 residents in 2011. Blacks and Hispanics accounted for 87 percent of those stops – many of which were deemed unconstitutional by Judge Scheindlin, who estimates that at least 200,000 were made without reasonable suspicion.

“The NYPD’s practice of making stops that lack individualized reasonable suspicion has been so pervasive and persistent as to become not only a part of the NYPD’s standard operating procedure, but a fact of daily life in some New York City neighborhoods, ” she said.

Media headlines communicate an alarming trend in civil rights violations – not only among law enforcement but in our school system and workplaces. At the Sanders Firm, our civil rights attorneys have the experience and knowledge to evaluate your circumstances and determine whether abuses have occurred. With nearly five decades of combined experience, our legal team will put our trial and mediation skills to work for you, making sure your voice is heard.

Upholding the Civil Rights Act – one client at a time

The Sanders Firm has attained outstanding results for our clients litigating civil rights claims involving:

  • Police brutality and abuse
  • False arrests
  • Racial profiling
  • Surveillance abuse
  • Hate crimes
  • Human trafficking
  • Student rights
  • Government employment discrimination
  • Infringement on religious freedom
  • Vote suppression
  • Destruction of religious property
  • Prisoners’ rights violations, including infringement on free speech, abusive disciplinary actions and failure to provide adequate medical care
  • Violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Equal Pay Act, or Fair Labor Standards Act

Recent NY civil rights verdicts and settlements

A melting pot of diverse cultures and ethnicities from the world over, New York is a hotbed for hate crimes and discrimination perpetrated against its minority populations, including Asians, Caribbean immigrants, Hispanics, gays and lesbians, Hassidic Jews and African Americans.

Just last year, the city paid out more than $22 million to resolve civil rights claims that charged the NYPD with everything from illegal arrests to withholding medications from prisoners.

A few notable NYC civil rights cases:

  • A $1.2 million settlement was given to two Columbian siblings who spent a combined 17 years in jail for a robbery conviction that was later overturned.
  • A 12-year-old girl received $115,000 after she was arrested for writing on her school desk with an erasable marker.
  • After accusing police of smashing his head through the windshield of a car while still in handcuffs, a man collected $150,000 from the city.

If you believe that you are a victim of illegal discrimination in New York, you are encouraged to contact a civil rights lawyer from a well-credentialed firm – a law office that promises to protect your basic rights and liberties.

Pursuing a civil rights lawsuit in New York

Representing clients in all 5 New York boroughs – Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, Manhattan, Staten Island — and Long Island, The Sanders Firm advocates for individuals whose constitutional and civil rights have been violated. Throughout the metro area, our NY civil rights attorneys have built a solid reputation for providing unsurpassed legal support for our clients, as we fight for justice on their behalf.

Our personal injury lawyers have been litigating complex cases involving police brutality, racial profiling, hate crimes and other civil rights violations in New York for more than 45 years, helping innocent victims of unlawful discrimination.

A civil rights lawyer from The Sanders Firm will perform a free case evaluation, and based on your unique situation, offer advice on filing a formal complaint. If you do not have grounds for bringing a civil rights lawsuit, legal recourse may be available in cases involving age discrimination, wrongful termination or other instances of prejudiced behavior.

Call 1.800.FAIR.PLAY for a comprehensive discussion of your legal rights and options.

  1. Huffington Post, NYPD Civil Rights Cases: City Shells Out $22 Million To Settle Lawsuits Against NYC's Finest, https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/29/nypd-violating-civil-rights-cases-22-million-paul-browne-_n_1839022.html

  2. Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Human Rights Violations in Certain Countries in 2012, https://mfa.gov.by/upload/Report2012_eng.pdf

  3. The Guardian, Lawsuit alleges NYPD violated civil rights by entering private buildings, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/mar/28/nypd-lawsuit-civil-rights-bronx

  4. International Business Times, US Guilty Of Several Human Rights Violations In 2012: Human Rights Watch, https://www.ibtimes.com/us-guilty-several-human-rights-violations-2012-human-rights-watch-1056702

  5. Huffington Post, Stop And Frisk Violated Rights Of New Yorkers, Judge Rules, https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/12/stop-and-frisk-violated-rights-new-york-city-judge-rules_n_3743236.html

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