Civil Rights

Newkirk Zwagerman is Your Iowa Civil Rights Law Firm

Our civil rights attorneys fight for clients who have been harmed by unlawful background checks, education discrimination, racial profiling, and other civil rights offenses.

What Laws Protect Civil Rights?

In the United States of America, civil rights are protected by both federal and state constitutions. Additionally, certain laws protect your civil rights in more specific ways. These legal protections shield you against infringements by public businesses, your employer, and the government.

Background Checks

Many employers run criminal background checks on applicants and employees. If your employer’s screenings excluded you for arrests or convictions that were not job-related, you may be eligible for an employment discrimination civil suit claim. Newkirk Zwagerman’s civil rights lawyers have successfully challenged numerous employers for using overly broad criminal background checks.

Leonard Bates, a shareholder at our Des Moines law firm, is continuously pursuing new and innovative ways to remove background checks as a barrier to equal employment. If you feel an employer inappropriately used a background check in their hiring process, please contact one of our civil rights attorneys.

Education Rights

In addition to federal laws, Iowa state laws protect students from discrimination in several ways. The Iowa Civil Rights Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and Iowa’s bullying laws all help protect your right to an education. 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 a school official or school district violates a student’s right to a safe educational environment and the same educational experience as their peers, student discrimination laws are there to help those students. Newkirk Zwagerman has fought for many students who have experienced bullying or discrimination. When possible, our firm works with the school district to remedy the issue, however, sometimes civil rights litigation is necessary. When a discrimination civil lawsuit is required, you can count on the expert lawyers at Newkirk Zwagerman.

Racial Profiling

Racial profiling can occur anywhere, at any time. It happens in stores, schools, and at work. If you’ve experienced racial profiling, Newkirk Zwagerman’s experienced and compassionate civil rights attorneys can help you get the justice you deserve. We help individuals who have experienced racial profiling resulting in a denial of services or adverse action that infringes on their rights.

Newkirk Zwagerman also works with other civil rights organizations and civil rights groups in the community to address racial profiling on a wider scale.


If you suspect your civil rights have been violated, contact Iowa law firm Newkirk Zwagerman for discrimination legal counsel. You are entitled to equal protection under the law.

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