50 years ago today, July 2, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law. The new Act prohibited segregation and discrimination in all public places including hotels, restaurants, theaters, sports arenas, and parks. It also made it illegal for employers to make employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin and established the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to enforce the law. The Civil Rights Act was first proposed by President John F. Kennedy on June 11th, 1963.
To read more about the Civil Rights Act of 1964:
- Our Documents – Civil Rights Act (1964)
- Teaching With Documents: The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (National Archives)
- Civil Rights Act (History.com)