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Describe at least three of the Titles contained in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and explain the effect they had on segregation and discrimination.

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In 1964, following prolonged debate and filibusters, Congress passed Public Law 88-352 (78 Stat. 241), popularly known as the Civil Rights Act of 1964. President Lyndon B. Johnson signed it into law in July of that year.

The Act has seven titles: Title I is concerned with voting rights. Title II addresses discrimination in public accommodations. Title III mandates desegregation of public facilities. Title IV requires the desegregation of public education. Title V revised the procedures of the federal Commission on Civil Rights. Title VI assured nondiscrimination in federally assisted programs. Title VII outlawed discrimination in employment.

The implications of several titles are interrelated. Title VI impacted desegregation and discrimination very broadly because it was concerned with the financial aspect. Title VI connects with Titles II, III, and IV, because federally assisted programs include support of public facilities, such as hospitals, libraries, and schools (both directly to school systems and through scholarships).

Title IV, through its focus on schools, had a very wide reach, because all children in the United States are required to attend school. Although school desegregation had already been implemented in many locations following the landmark Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board ten years earlier, many school districts were not in compliance. The new law provided federal support for integration, which in practice sometimes involved sending National Guard troops to protect students and prevent violence.

In its focus on employment, Title VII in some ways had the most far-reaching effects, because every employer afterward had to comply with nondiscriminatory hiring practices. Section 703(a) of the act created the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to implement the law. Its provisions made it unlawful for employers to not hire, to fire, or to discharge in any way any person in regard to “compensation, terms, conditions or privileges or employment, because of such individual's race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.”

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