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Practice Areas > Civil Rights

The Civil Rights Practice Group

The United States Constitution, together with other federal, state and local laws, prohibits government actors, municipalities, police, businesses, school officials, employers, and individuals from discriminating against anyone because of their religion, race, gender, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. Newman Ferrara has some of the most experienced civil rights attorneys in the field and the firm works tirelessly to fight injustice on behalf of their clients who have been harmed due to civil rights violations. Newman Ferrara specializes in addressing a wide variety of Constitutional Torts and Due Process Violations as well as claims involving Employment Discrimination, Voting Rights, Police Misconduct, Housing Discrimination, Open Government and Community Oriented Development.

Employment Discrimination

Employment law covers a complex network of state and federal laws that control how employers must treat employees, former employees, and applicants for employment. Newman Ferrara attorneys are knowledgeable in these areas and experienced at litigating on behalf of both employers and employees in areas such as employment discrimination, affirmative action, sexual harassment, employee benefits, whistleblower litigation, wrongful discharge, employment contracts, and other claims arising under federal and state laws.

Marriage Equality and Sexual Orientation Discrimination

Cases involving discrimination against same-sex couples as well as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered individuals, are among the most important and challenging of the modern civil rights era. Newman Ferrara attorneys have taken on significant litigation in this area and are committed to advancing the fight for equal rights for their clients.

Voting Rights

Newman Ferrara attorneys are recognized as experts in the complex area of voting rights litigation and have been involved in numerous cases involving the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that have challenged the constitutionality of at-large election systems and discriminatory redistricting practices nationwide. Professor Randolph McLaughlin, Chair of Newman Ferrara's Civil Rights Practice Group, successfully litigated the seminal voting rights case of Goosby v. Town of Hempstead, 981 F. Supp 751 (E.D.N.Y. 1997), aff'd 180 F.3d 476 (2d. Cir.1999), cert denied 528 U.S. 1138 (2000).

Police Misconduct

The United States Constitution protects the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure or the denial of life, liberty or property without due process of law. Newman Ferrara attorneys have successfully represented clients denied these rights by both on-duty and off-duty police officers in cases involving the use of excessive force, warrantless searches, false arrest, malicious prosecution and wrongful death.

Housing Discrimination

Newman Ferrara attorneys represent clients in litigation involving federal, state and local laws that secure the right to be free from discriminatory practices in connection with the rental or ownership of housing.

Open Government

Federal laws such as the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and state laws such as New York State's Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) and Open Meetings law exist to insure that government decision-makers act transparently and with accountability to the people they serve. Newman Ferrara attorneys are experienced in protecting the public's "right to know" and have assisted many clients with obtaining records from federal, state and local agencies and challenging illegal government actions.

Community Oriented Development

Newman Ferrara's attorneys are experienced in assisting residents, businesses and community groups to meaningfully participate in the review and approval process for development proposals that will directly impact their quality of life and property rights. Our attorneys have also assisted developers willing to work cooperatively with local residents to create community oriented, smart development.

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