Civil Rights

Civil Rights encompasses many areas of the law, but for most it is the connection between your employer, a public business, or the government infringing upon the rights that are given to all people living in the United States by our State and Federal Laws and Constitutions. Newkirk Zwagerman defends these rights everyday for our clients. We do this by advocating for clients who have been harmed by unlawful background checks for employment, students’ education rights, and racial profiling, among other things.

Background Checks

Many employers use criminal background checks on applicants and employees. When those background checks exclude people for convictions or arrests that are not job-related, it’s possible that you may have an employment discrimination claim. Newkirk Zwagerman has experience challenging numerous employer who have used overbroad criminal background checks. In the firm, Shareholder Leonard Bates is pursuing new and innovative ways to remove background checks as a barrier to equal employment. Please give us a call if you have questions about a criminal background check.

Education Rights

Iowa law protects students from discrimination in many ways; the Iowa Civil Rights Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Iowa’s bullying laws, and federal laws. Education laws protect students from discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, religion, or disability in any program or activity. When the school district fails to protect its students from violations of their right to be in a safe educational environment and receive the same educational experience as their peers then the laws are there to help those students. Newkirk Zwagerman has helped many students and their families who have experienced discrimination or bullying by advocating for the students and when possible working with the school district to remedy the issue and allow the student to remain in their school.

Racial Profiling

Racial profiling can occur anywhere, at any time. This issue goes beyond racial profiling by law enforcement officials, it happens in stores, schools, and employers. Newkirk Zwagerman works with other organizations and groups in the community to try and address these issues on a wider scale. We also help individuals who have experienced racial profiling resulting in a denial of services or rights.