Title VI is a federal statute and provides that no person in the United States shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.
Threshold Requirements Regarding Title VI
If any of your programs or activities receives federal funding, then all of your programs and activities must comply with Title VI. Any agency receiving federal dollars either directly from FTA, indirectly through ODOT or both, must:
- Ensure that the level and quality of public transportation service is provided in a nondiscriminatory manner;
- Promote full and fair participation in public transportation decision-making without regard to race, color or national origin;
- Ensure meaningful access to transit-related programs and activities by persons with limited English proficiency;
- Prepare and submit a Title VI Program.
A formal federal policy on environmental justice was established in February, 1994, with "Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-income Populations." The Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) has oversight of the federal government's compliance with EO 12898. CEQ has published a guidance document on environmental justice for federal agencies. In addition, all federal agencies were directed under EO 12898 to establish internal directives to ensure that the spirit of the order is reflected in the full range of their activities.
Over the past two decades, there has been increasing concern over environmental impacts in minority and low-income populations. Evidence suggests that some communities face disproportionately high and adverse human health and environmental effects. This concern regarding environmental justice builds upon Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C 2000d) that requires nondiscrimination in federally assisted programs by emphasizing the need to identify and address disproportionate effects of federal programs, policies, and activities.
Resources & Requirements
Limited English Proficiency (LEP)
On August 11, 2000, the President signed Executive Order 13166, "Improving Access to Services for Persons with Limited English Proficiency". The Executive Order requires Federal agencies to examine the services they provide, identify any need for services to those with Limited English Proficiency (LEP), and develop and implement a system to provide those services so LEP persons can have meaningful access to them. The Executive Order also requires that the Federal agencies work to ensure that recipients of Federal financial assistance provide meaningful access to their LEP applicants and beneficiaries.
Threshold Requirements Regarding LEP Services
If you are required to have a Title VI program, a required part of that program is showing how you provide access to LEP persons. Therefore, recipients of Federal financial assistance must ensure that their programs and activities normally provided in English are accessible to LEP persons and, thus, do not discriminate on the basis of national origin in violation of Title VI's prohibition against national origin discrimination.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)
Federal Transit Law in 49 U.S.C. 5332(b), provides that no person in the United States shall, on the grounds of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, or age, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any project, program or activity funded in whole or in part through financial assistance under this Act. This applies to employment and business opportunities and is considered to be in addition to the provisions of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Threshold Requirements for an Affirmative Action Plan & EEO Program
- Fifty (50) or more transit-related employees
- Receives capital or operating assistance in excess of 1 million
- Receives planning assistance in excess of $250,000
FTA EEO Regulations, Guidance & Procedures
Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE)
USDOT's DBE Program seeks to ensure nondiscrimination in the award and administration of USDOT-assisted contracts in the Department's highway, transit, and airport financial assistance programs. It also aims to create a level playing field on which DBEs can compete fairly for USDOT-assisted contracts. The FTA Office of Civil Rights is responsible for monitoring FTA recipients' DBE programs and ensuring their compliance with USDOT's DBE Regulations found at 49 CFR Part 26.
Threshold Requirements for a DBE Program
FTA recipients receiving planning, capital and/or operating assistance who will award prime contracts (excluding transit vehicle purchases) exceeding $250,000 in FTA funds in a Federal fiscal year (Contracts can include purchase orders).
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) is committed to a Civil Rights Program for the participation of Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs) in ODOT.
An Overall Annual Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Goal has been developed for Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) participation in ODOT's Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) federally assisted transit contracts.
See DBE reporting information from the Reporting Forms tab on our Provider Handbook page.
Verify that a business is a qualified DBE with the required certification visit the Office of Minority, Women and Emerging Small Business (OMWESB) website.