The Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department will undergo a significant change under President-elect Joe Biden.
Once Biden takes office next year, his administration will bring the civil rights division of the agency back to its original purpose, focusing on anti-discrimination laws that protect millions in minority groups that were largely ignored during the Trump administration, according to Bloomberg.
Vanita Gupta, who led the division under Obama from 2014 to early 2017, told Bloomberg that means enforcement of civil rights protections in housing, education, and the workplace. The division will also make changes in local police enforcement following a summer of protests and actions to defund the police.
“This will be an even bigger pivot because of what the Trump administration represents,” said Gupta, who now runs the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “It’s been a kind of systematic erosion of civil rights enforcement that is unlike anything we’ve seen in recent times or recent administrations.”
Black civil rights leaders and voters were paramount to Biden’s election win. According to the Associated Press’ VoteCast, 90% of Black voters cast their ballots for Biden in the election. It’s not surprising when you remember Trump has spent his time in office slamming former quarterback Colin Kaepernick for his anthem protest, refusing to denounce White supremacists, and calling a Black Lives Matter mural ‘a symbol of hate‘ and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris a monster.
More than 78 million people voted for Biden in the 2020 election, but Trump also received more than 73 million votes, which suggests at a minimum, millions of Americans are largely ignoring the race issues that plague the country today.
“We have been lullabied for so long in this country that when you have somebody like President Donald J. Trump come along and be so blatant with his racism, it’s a shock to the senses,” Nina Turner, a Black progressive and former Ohio state senator told the Associated Press. “But this country should not be deluded that it’s just Trump, it’s millions of people. A lot of white liberals, they’re very comfortable with pointing the finger at President Trump. But they need to look in the mirror…because he is just a reflection of what is already a reality in this country.”
Additionally, The Hill reports Biden is not just helping Black Americans. The Biden administration also plans to immediately repeal the ban on immigration that targeted many Muslim-majority countries and reinstate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Under the Trump administration, one of the division’s biggest cases stemmed from a suit it filed against Yale University claiming the school discriminated against White and Asian applicants by taking race into consideration to admit more Black and Hispanic students.