Skip to main content

LA Issues 1st Civil Rights Law Enforcement

Posted on 03/18/2024
Corey Brown


What Happened?
We joined LA Civil Rights this week to announce the city’s first anti-discrimination citation under our new Civil Rights law passed in 2019. 
Corey Brown, a Black man, was told by Smart & Final security staff that he had to leave his backpack at the front of the store. Later on in the store, he noticed customers of other races with their backpacks, and he had the presence of mind to report it to a community group who works with LA Civil Rights. 
Investigators interviewed staff members and found that the store’s bag policy “had no formal application and was applied selectively based on the appearance of a customer.” Now, Smart & Final has to pay a $10,000 citation and correct their discriminatory policy.

Why it Matters
This enforcement should send a clear message to unscrupulous actors in Los Angeles -- we are ready to come after you and make sure that this city's commerce, education, employment and housing are free of discrimination. 
Before this law was passed in LA, similar protections were in place at the state and federal levels, but claims can be backed up for years. Because LA’s department is so new, our Civil Rights Enforcement Unit can begin looking into claims immediately. 
If you may be a victim of discrimination, report it using 311 or at

Three More Quick Hits!

This week, we want to highlight three extremely helpful, but underutilized resources from the city’s Economic & Workforce Development Department:
On Tuesday, we visited Para Los Niños, which is part of the city’s YouthSource Center Network. In addition to academic services, they also offer kids free mental health counseling, which is incredibly important given the youth mental health crisis in our communities. They also provide:
  • Referrals to Paid Internships 
  • Help with Scholarship Applications 
  • Tutoring
BusinessSource Centers like PACE Business Development Center in Hollywood provides the following services at no cost to LA City business owners and resident entrepreneurs: 
  • One-on-One Consulting 
  • Access to Capital 
  • Business Education, Training and Workshops 
  • Employee Hiring/WorkForce Development 
Just like BusinessSource Centers help entrepreneurs at no cost, WorkSource Centers are a free resource for people to help find employment and access:
  • Job Training, Resume Building and Interview Skills 
  • Employment Referrals 
  • Career Guidance and Placement Assistance