The California Civil Rights Department (CRD) is dedicated to combatting hate incidents and hate crimes. CRD has established a non-emergency reporting hotline and portal, CA vs. Hate Resource Line and Network (CA vs. Hate) to support individuals and communities targeted for hate. CRD is also home to the Commission on the State of Hate, created by the California Legislature to strengthen California’s efforts to stop hate and promote mutual respect among California’s diverse population. In addition to these efforts, CRD also enforces civil rights protection under the California Ralph Civil Rights Act which aims to protect people from violence or intimidation by the threat of violence.
CA vs Hate
This non-emergency hate incident and hate crime reporting hotline and online portal is available to anyone who has experienced or witnessed an act of hate. Reporters don’t need to know if what happened to them was illegal; all are welcome to report and all are eligible for support.
Reports can be made online at any time in 15 languages. People also can report an incident by calling (833) 866-4283 or 833-8-NO-HATE, Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and talking to a trained civil rights agent in over 200 languages. Outside of those hours, people can leave a voicemail or call 211 to report a hate incident and seek support from a professional trained in culturally competent communication and trauma-informed practices.
What Hate Can Look Like
These are some examples of bias-related crimes that are forbidden by the law. Note that some other acts of hate may not violate criminal law but may still be a violation of civil law:These are examples of bias-related crimes that are forbidden by the law:
- Threats, verbal or written
- Physical assault or attempted assault
- Hate-related graffiti, including swastikas and other offensive symbols
- Bomb threats
- Disturbance of religious meetings
- Vandalism or property damage
California law protects individuals from hate violence based on the following:
- National origin
- Immigration status*
- Primary language*
- Disability (mental or physical)
- Sex and gender
- Gender identity and gender expression
- Sexual orientation
- Genetic information
- Marital status
- Familial status (families with children under 18 or people who are pregnant)
- Source of income (including the use of government rental assistance such as a Section 8 Housing Choice voucher)
- Military or veteran status
Civil remedies available under the Ralph Act:
- Restraining Orders: After a restraining order is obtained from a court, violators of that court order can be fined or jailed.
- Actual Damages: Damages may include the cost of the victim’s medical treatment, lost wages, property repair, or payment for emotional suffering and distress.
- Punitive Damages: A court can order additional damages to punish violators.
- Civil Penalties: A court may order a fine of $25,000, which would be awarded to the person filing the complaint.
- Attorney’s Fees: A court may order the payment of the complainant’s attorney fees resulting from the lawsuit.