Race, Racism and the Law 
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Article 5(b) Security of Person

United States Report on Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination,
  Initial Country Report (Sept, 2000). 

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Vernellia R. Randall
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 Security of Person. Under Article 5(b) the State Party must provide equal protection against violence and bodily harm, whether inflicted by governmental officials or by individuals, groups or institutions.

As discussed above, U.S. law prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity or national origin. Notably, the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution guarantee equal protection of the laws to all persons. This guarantee extends to equal protection against violence and bodily harm. Moreover, several statutes have been enacted at both the state and federal level which create criminal and civil liability for violence or threats of violence on the basis of race, color, ethnicity or national origin. See, e.g., Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994; Civil Rights Act of 1968.

U.S. law has long provided criminal penalties for certain violations of civil rights, including particular acts of violence motivated by racism. See, e.g., 18 U.S.C. sec. 245(b)(2); 18 U.S.C. sec. 247(c); 42 U.S.C. sec. 3631. Federal "hate crimes" law prohibits any person from using force or willful threats to injure, intimidate, or interfere with, or attempt to injure, intimidate or interfere with any person because of his or her race, color, religion, or national origin and because he or she is engaging in certain federally protected rights, including rights related to education, employment and the use of public facilities and establishments which serve the public. In some instances, harsher penalties have been available when ordinary crimes are committed with racist intent. In addition, many states also protect equal rights to security of person through state hate crime laws.

 

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Equality Before Tribunals ] Discrimination by Law Enforcement ] Overrepresentation in the criminal justice system ] Disparities in Sentencing ] Capital Punishment ] Prisons ] [ Article 5(b) Security of Person ] Article 5(c) Political Rights ] Article 5(d) Other Civil Rights ] Article 5(e) Economic Social and Cultural Rights ] Article 5(f) Access to Public Accommodations ]
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Parent Level:
Introduction ] General Report ] Legal Prohibition ] U.S. Reservations, Understandings and Declarations ] Compliance with Specific Articles ] Article 1 - Racial Discrimination ] Article 2 ] Art 3 Condemn Racial Segregation and Apartheid ] Article 4 Eliminate Incitements or Acts of Discrimination ] Article 5 Equality Under the Law ] Article 6 Assure Effective Protection and Remedies ] Article 7 Adopt Measures ] Conclusion ]
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[Race and Racial Groups] [Citizenship Rights]  [Justice and Race] [Patterns of Basic Needs] [Intersectionality Issues] [Human Rights]
 

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Last Updated:
Friday, October 05, 2001  

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Thanks to Derrick Bell and his pioneer work: 
Race, Racism and American Law
(1993).