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Civil Rights

Affirming Equality for Women

A longtime supporter of the rights of women, Susan is a leader in Congress on women’s issues.  In each Congress, she is a cosponsor of the Equal Rights Amendment to ensure the equality of all Americans regardless of gender.

Susan is also a proud supporter of the Paycheck Fairness Act.  Women still only earn 77 cents for every dollar earned by men.  The enactment of this legislation would provide a much-needed update to the Equal Pay Act of 1963 by providing effective remedies to women who are not being paid equal wages for doing equal work.

Susan is an original cosponsor of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act to require employers to make reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers, such as permission to use a stool while working a cash register, or carry a bottle of water to stay hydrated, or temporary reassignment to lighter duty tasks. It will also prevent employers from forcing women out on leave. These protections would allow pregnant women to keep working and supporting their families while maintaining healthy pregnancies. 

Ensuring Supreme Court Access for Servicemembers

The words on the United States Supreme Court building read “Equal Justice Under Law.”  Yet some U.S. service members are denied access to the nation’s highest court.  That is why Susan reintroduced legislation to fix this inequity in the military justice system.

The Equal Justice for Our Military Act would eliminate a troubling disparity in current law by allowing court-martialed service members whose cases involve extraordinary circumstances to appeal for Supreme Court review. Furthermore, the bill would allow service members to appeal to the Supreme Court in cases where their petitions for review by the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces have been denied as well as allow the Supreme Court discretionary review of certain cases, provisions supported by the American Bar Association.

Ending LGBT Discrimination

Susan has consistently supported legislation that would outlaw discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.  Susan is also working to protect students from bullying Helping to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was one of Susan’s proudest legislative accomplishments.and discrimination due to their sexual orientation or gender identity. She has a perfect lifetime record on LGBT issues according to the Human Rights Campaign

Juror Non-Discrimination

With Americans being kicked off juries because their sexual orientation, Susan introduced the Juror Non-Discrimination Act to prohibit a person from being removed from a jury because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.  The federal government already prohibits juror discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, and economic status. 

Student Non-Discrimination and Putting an End to Bullying

Our public schools should be free of discrimination and harassment. Susan is a cosponsor of the Student Non-Discrimination Act to protect students from being excluded from federally assisted education programs because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. The bill considers harassment as a form of discrimination and prohibits retaliation against those who refuse to take part in bullying or harassment.

Susan is a cosponsor of the Safe Schools Improvement Act to require schools to put in place policies to prevent bullying and ensure a student’s ability to safely participate in school activities.

Susan joined as an original cosponsor in introducing a sweeping LGBT anti-discrimination bill. The Equality Act also includes language from Davis’s bill ensuring jury service protections for LGBT individuals.

The Every Child Deserves a Family Act, which Susan is cosponsoring, would prohibit discrimination against LGBT Americans in their effort to become an adoptive or foster parent.

Susan supports appointing a special envoy in the Department of State to encourage LGBT equality around the world. The International Human Rights Defense Act would put the United States at the forefront of global LGBT human rights protections.

Justice Reform

In response to the rising tensions between police and communities, Susan is cosponsoring a package of bills to reform our justice system.

Preventing Tragedies Between Police and Communities Act requires de-escalation training for law enforcement agencies that receive federal funds. Local authorities need the resources and training to be able to defuse a situation without violence.

Police CAMERA Act provides federal resources for state and local law enforcement agencies to develop safe and effective body-worn camera programs.

Sentencing Reform Act reduces some federal mandatory minimum drug sentences, reduces the three-strikes mandatory life sentence to 25 years, and provides judges with greater discretion. It allows for retroactive application of these reductions. Judges would ultimately determine appropriate sentence reduction to ensure violent criminals are not released early.

Susan supported legislation to help state and local leaders reduce juvenile crime with programs that will better serve at-risk and youth offenders.  Davis is an original cosponsor of the Supporting Youth Opportunity and Preventing Delinquency Act. 

More on Civil Rights

Feb 23, 2017 Press Release

SAN DIEGO - In the face of recent actions against refugees and immigrants by the Trump Administration, Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) led local immigration and business advocates in denouncing President Trump’s actions on immigration and emphasized how immigration benefits our country and our economy. At a press conference in San Diego, Davis and the group called for an end to the refugee and Muslim ban, opposed mass deportation, highlighted cross border cooperation, and called for comprehensive and humane immigration reform.

Feb 9, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) re-introduced two of her signature election reform bills to restore integrity to federal elections and end constraints placed on voters who want to vote by mail, known as absentee.

Feb 4, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) released the following statement on nationwide ruling against the refugee and Muslim Ban and the decision by the State Department to reinstate visas to those travelers who had them revoked.

“Our values, our democracy, and our security won the day with the judge’s decision to put a nationwide hold on the President’s ban on refugees and Muslims. This executive order runs contrary to our security, undermines our fight against terror, and provides our enemies with a recruitment tool.

Jan 30, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – In a letter to Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) requested information on any people with visas or Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status who might be detained at San Diego International Airport. Davis also called for them to be released from CBP custody and that they be allowed access to attorneys.

Nov 15, 2016 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) joined her House colleagues in requesting President-elect Donald Trump rescind his appointment of alt-right leader Steve Bannon as White House Chief Strategist. So far, 120 members have signed the letter.

Text of the letter is below.


Dear President-elect Trump:

Oct 11, 2016 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Susan A. Davis (D-San Diego) solidified her perfect lifetime record on LGBT issues with the release of the Human Rights Campaign’s legislative scorecard for the 114th Congress.

“Equality is a founding principle of America,” said Davis, a member of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus. “I’ve been proud to work with the Human Rights Campaign and want to thank them for their work to ensure America is living up to its principle of total equality.”

Sep 22, 2016 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) supported House legislation to help state and local leaders reduce juvenile crime with programs that will better serve at-risk and youth offenders.  Davis is an original cosponsor of the Supporting Youth Opportunity and Preventing Delinquency Act, which passed the House.

Sep 13, 2016 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Susan Davis’s (D-San Diego) effort to close the equity gap in career and technical education (CTE) moved forward when the House passed the bipartisan Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act.  The bill includes provisions from Davis’s Equity in Career and Technical Educ

Aug 26, 2016 Editorial

On Aug. 6, 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed landmark legislation — the Voting Rights Act (VRA) — into law. It knocked down barriers many states had put in place that disenfranchised minority voters.

The impact of the new law was immediate. Nearly a million African-Americans registered to vote in the first four years after the VRA was signed into law.

It was a watershed moment in the history of our nation that meant millions of Americans who were previously denied the right to have a say in the direction of their country finally had a seat at the table.

Aug 5, 2016 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Susan Davis (D-San Diego) continues to fight to protect voting rights as America recognized the anniversary of the Voting Rights Act. On August 6, 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act to knock down barriers to voting.