Home > How to Get Involved > Seeking Help With Civil Rights Issues

Seeking Help With Civil Rights Issues

By: Garry Crystal - Updated: 8 Dec 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Civil Rights Citizens Advice

There are a number of government agencies that can be contacted when seeking help with civil rights issues. There are also different offices and sources of help that should be contacted depending on the rights that have been infringed upon.

Breach of Civil Rights

A breach or infringement of civil rights can occur in a number of different ways. It can occur as discrimination that happens in the workplace or harassment in the form of racial insults in the street. It may simply be the case that a trader has sold faulty goods and will not give a refund. Whichever civil rights are breached and wherever this breach occurs there will be an official agency that deals with particular infringements of specific rights.

Sources of Help

If your rights have been breached then it is important to get information that will help you proceed with the correct course of action. Agencies and authorities on civil rights issues will include:

  • The Citizens Advice Bureau
  • Victim Support Organisation
  • The Police
  • Civil rights lawyers
  • Trade Unions
  • Organisations such as Liberty and Amnesty International have a great deal of information on civil rights issues
  • Equality and Human Rights Commission
  • The Law Centres Federation
  • The Office of Fair Trading

Finding the Right Help

Of course it will be helpful to contact the right agency or official for your particular civil rights issue. You would not usually contact the police over a matter of discrimination in the workplace. Agencies such as the Citizens Advice Bureau should be the first point of contact for help with civil rights issues. They will be able to give information and advice on nearly all the different civil rights problems that can occur. If needed they will also be able to give the names of lawyers who can help with various civil rights issues.

Discrimination and Employment

Discrimination and harassment in the workplace does occur with alarming frequency in Britain. The number of reported discrimination cases may have dropped since the government implemented anti-discrimination legislation but it has not been totally eliminated. Employers have a legal duty to investigate any cases of discrimination. Managers and Human Resources departments should always be contacted if discrimination does occur. The matter could be taken as far as an employment tribunal where the issue will be investigated by impartial judges.

Help from the Police

The police should be contacted in cases of harassment or hates crimes. Hate crimes will include physical and verbal attacks on another due to prejudice from the attacker. This crime is taken very seriously by the police and the matter can end up in the criminal courts. The police will have experts who are trained to deal with this type of crime and there will also be help available from the Victim Support unit. Witnesses to hate crimes should also always report the matter to the police.

Law Centres Federation

If you have encountered a problem such as discrimination then law centres should be able to help. Law centres will be able to give advice and information on how to proceed with the matter and will also have lawyers who specialise in civil rights issues. If a lawyer or solicitor from one of the law centres decides to take your case then legal aid or some other form of public funding may be available. For information on where to find a nearby law centre in your particular country contact the Law Centres Federation in England and Wales or the Scottish Association of Law Centres in Scotland.

Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)

The Equality and Human Rights Commission can provide invaluable information on a number of civil and human rights issues. They will be able to provide legal advice, and solicitors and lawyers will be able to give advice on the best course of action to take with the matter. England, Scotland and Wales will have their own EHRC branches. Information is available from their website or through their telephone helpline.

Obtaining expert advice and information will ensure that you are thoroughly aware of how to best proceed with your civil rights problem. Official agencies and offices exist to help with these types of problems. Contacting these offices should be the first step for anyone who has suffered a breach of their civil rights.

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I am a father who works constant night shift, today I was contacted by the new child maintenance service to say they had calculated how much maintenance I should pay for my son. This calculation took into account the number of overnight stays he had, and since it was according to my ex wife less than 52, I have to pay extra. Now I in no-way object to paying for my child's upkeep however I do feel I and other fathers and mothers who work nights or shifts are being unfairly penalised by a system that is quite open to abuse by the parent receiving payments.surely this is discrimination and a breach of human rights. I like many others would love to have my son stay more overnight, but it just isn't possible. So the quality time I spend during days I feel should be taken into account. My ex wife obviously knows that the system is flawed and so takes full advantage of this not only for financial gain but to try make out I'm a bad father which can be very upsetting and stressful. I have had days when I pick my son up, spend the day having fun and as I have to go work at night I drop him off later. The thing is, his mother is staying at her new partners house and so won't see him till whenever she returns home which in some cases may be a few days. Yet I. Still pay her money for his upkeep. There is something fundamentally wrong with that don't you think. I know you can't comment on individual cases however I am not not alone in this predicament I'm sure thousand of fathers and mothers are going through the same hell. I am writing to yourself to ask if there is anything that can be done to change things to make a fair system. Personally I feel some kind of access rather than overnight stays should be taken into account. I then think system abusers should be made to pay back over payments as compensation. I hope to hear from you. Many thanks Robert Irvine 12 Corbett Gate Tollcross Glasgow G32 8LS Tel: 07984800580
Robert - 8-Dec-16 @ 2:04 AM
@J. Not really as it's not clear what the problem is? Is this a neighbour dispute? What did the enforcement notice say? They normally give details so it's obvious what they're enforcing etc.
CivilRightsMovement - 18-Nov-14 @ 10:32 AM
Could you help, I have been involved in very diffent treatment and it feels like harassment from members of my local council over a planning development next door and flooding to my property with water from hardsufacing and ground water flooding to my garden with has eroded the ground and the council have investigated my complaints, said they do not up hold them, but then wrote because they found I was right.Since this they have made things very difficult for me, which I have asked them if they had made others in other properties do this, what they had sent an enforcement notice to me for, but they have not replied.I need to get help with this and how I had been put in a situation where the development person was told it seems from the council before me, and they person then came after me and was threating, I called the police, but I am getting a form of harassment from the neighbours the other side also.Please can you help me with this? Thank you, J
j - 18-Nov-14 @ 12:58 AM
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