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AG Herring establishes Office of Civil Rights

Published: Jan. 5, 2021 at 8:11 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced Tuesday he is establishing a new Office of Civil Rights.

Herring said defending Virginians’ civil rights has been a centerpiece of his time in office, but the new division within the Attorney General’s office will enhance the state’s ability to protect Virginians from discrimination in housing, employment and public life.

“Now is the time to bring it together to make sure that all of this work is done in a centralized way, to make it more effective and to send a really strong message the Attorney General and our office are here to fight for them,” Herring told WDBJ7 Tuesday morning. “So If they have experienced discrimination, like getting paid less because of their gender, or being fired for sexual orientation, or being denied a loan or housing because of race, we are here to help, and we will fight for them.”

Herring is running for reelection. His opponent for the Democratic nomination, Delegate Jay Jones, said creation of the office is long overdue, but suggested the announcement was motivated by politics.

“The creation of a Civil Rights Division is too important to be a mere political stunt for Herring’s reelection campaign,” Jones said in a written statement Tuesday afternoon.

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