Charged with safeguarding Georgians from discrimination in housing and employment, we enforce the Georgia Fair Employment Practices act of 1978 and the Georgia Fair Housing Law.
The Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity (GCEO) is a state agency under the auspices of the Office of the Governor, located at 205 Jesse Hill Jr. Dr. SE, 14th Floor-1470B East Tower in Atlanta.
The Commission has a Board of Directors that consists of a diverse group of Attorneys, Business Owners, and Community Leaders statewide.
The Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity (GCEO) consists of two divisions, the Equal Employment Division and the Fair Housing Division. The staff consists of an Executive Director and Administrator, Deputy Director, two Division Directors, and a team of Compliance Officers, Intake Officers, Administrative Staff, and Externs.
The Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity was created by the passage of House Bill 1711, authored by the late Representative J.C. Daugherty (District 33) of Atlanta, Georgia in 1978. The legislation was enacted to safeguard individuals within the State of Georgia from discrimination in public employment based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex handicap and age with respect to employment. The legislation was known as the “Fair Employment Practices Act of 1978.”
Since its passage, additional amendments have been passed to include additional protection from discrimination.
In 1968, the U.S. Congress passed the Federal Fair Housing Act that protects citizens from discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, and gender that was later added in 1974. In 1988, an amendment was passed to include disability and familial status. In 1988, Georgia passed the Georgia Fair Housing Law that prohibits discrimination in housing and housing related activities based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, and familial status (the presence of children under 18 in the household).
The Georgia Fair Housing Law (GFHL) is substantially equivalent to Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended the “Fair Housing Act”, and certain portions of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. The Fair Housing Act, the ADA, and Section 504 prohibit the same types of discriminatory practices as the GFHL on a nationwide basis.
The Federal Fair Housing Act's Legislative History (Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968) represents the culmination of three years (1966-1968) of congressional consideration of housing discrimination legislation.
It is the goal and aim of the Georgia Commission on Equal Opportunity’s Equal Employment Division and Fair Housing Division to eliminate discrimination throughout the State of Georgia.