Title VI: Notice of Nondiscrimination

City of Seattle Anti-Discrimination Policy

The City of Seattle operates its programs, services, employment, contracting, and activities without regard to race, color, national origin, disability, sex, age, in accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and applicable federal and local laws. Additionally, the City of Seattle prohibits discrimination in providing programs, services, or activities based on sexual orientation, gender identity, creed, religion, ancestry, political ideology, honorably discharged veteran or military status, participation in a Section 8 program, mother breastfeeding her child, and use of a service animal  in public places, city employment, and contracting.

The City of Seattle is committed to:

  • Prohibiting discrimination in programs, services, employment, and contracting;
  • Providing accommodations for people with disabilities to have an equal access to participate in and benefit from City programs, services, and activities;
  • Offering meaningful access to information, programs, and services in residents' preferred language;
  • Promoting a workplace that provides equal employment opportunities for all and is free of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation;
  • Providing reasonable accommodations for qualified employees with disabilities;
  • Identifying and addressing disproportionate and adverse human health and environmental, social, and economic impacts of programs, services, or activities for minority and low-income populations;
  • Applying the Racial Equity Toolkit to promote full and fair participation in public decision-making; and
  • Increasing women and minority-owned business (WMBE) participation in contracting and purchasing.

Any person who believes they have experienced unlawful discrimination, may file a complaint with the Seattle Office for Civil Rights online at: www.seattle.gov/civilrights/file-complaint or by phone: (206) 684-4500 or TTY: 7-1-1. Interpretation services are available.

To request ADA accommodations or file a disability-based discrimination complaint, please contact the Citywide ADA Coordinator at: adacoordinator@seattle.gov or by phone: (206) 684-2489 or TTY: 7-1-1. Interpretation services are available.

Title VI Programs

Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity

The City of Seattle is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees free of discrimination and harassment The City of Seattle will not tolerate any form of discrimination or harassment based on a person's race, color, religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, age, genetic information, disability, marital status, veteran or military status, or political ideology. Our goal is to be an inclusive workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the residents we serve.

Legal Authorities

  • Seattle Fair Employment Practices
  • Washington Law Against Discrimination
  • Civil Rights Act Title VI and VII
  • Age Discrimination in Employment Act
  • Genetic Information Non-discrimination Act
  • Equal Pay Act of 1963
  • Americans with Disabilities (ADA)

Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity. The City of Seattle's Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Policy and Affirmative Action Plan are established in accordance with the laws and regulations as set forth in Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Equal Employment Act of 1972, Presidential Executive Order 11246, as amended, the Office of Contract Compliance Programs Chapter 60 of Title 41CFR and Part 60-2 as amended and the U.S. Department of Justice, Office for Civil Rights, 28 CFR 42.301 governing requirements for grant recipients to establish and maintain an EEO Plan, which includes race/gender workforce analysis, and hiring and implementation plan components.

The City of Seattle commits to an equal employment opportunity policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, political ideology, age, creed, veteran's status, religions, ancestry, national origin, gender identity, or the presence of any sensory, physical or mental disability. Felecia Caldwell is the City's EEO Officer.

The City's Affirmative Action Program directs management at all levels to develop and implement strategies designed not only to achieve a workforce that is a reasonable representation of the relevant labor market consistent with and dependent upon the business conditions and number of placement opportunities that may occur, but also to ensure equal employment opportunity for all.

For a copy of the City's Affirmative Action Plan and Equal Employment Opportunity Plan, please contact  Victoria Farnum, the City Leave and Accommodation Administrator Coordinator at victoria.farnum@seattle.gov or by telephone at (206) 684-4797.      

Workforce Equity. The City of Seattle created the Workforce Equity Division in response to then Mayor Ed Murray's Executive Order (EO) 2015-02: Workforce Equity Initiative. The order instructed SDHR and the Seattle Office of Civil Rights (SOCR) to expand the scope and reach of the City's efforts to achieve equity for City employees. Specific actions include:

  • Create an interdepartmental team to address specific examples of disparity described in the City of Seattle Workforce Pay Equity and Utilization Report prepared by DCI Consulting.
  • Create, in coordination with the Citywide Human Resources Leadership Team, consolidated and aligned human resources policies, processes and practices that advance the City's ability to maintain consistent and equitable treatment of employees Citywide.
  • Create and implement training and leadership development programs for underrepresented populations.


Contact information: Felecia Caldwell: Felecia.caldwell@seattle.gov (206) 684-7614

Anti-Harassment Interdepartmental Team (IDT)

The City of Seattle is committed to improving the work environment for our employees by creating accountability measures to transform our workplace culture into one that promotes a safe, harassment-and discrimination-free workplace, where everyone can do their best work.

Contact information: Felecia Caldwell: Felecia.caldwell@seattle.gov (206) 684-7614

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 

The federal ADA prohibits discrimination in employment on the basis of disability and requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees and applicants for employment. The City is required to honor a reasonable accommodation request from an applicant or an employee who is a qualified individual with a disability unless the City can demonstrate that the accommodation would impose an undue hardship. If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, you may contact us at:

ADA Coordinator or Victoria Farnum, the City Leave and Accommodation Administrator Coordinator at victoria.farnum@seattle.gov or by telephone at (206) 684-47970      

Environmental Justice

Title VI and Environmental Justice apply to all programs, policies, and activities, including, but not limited to contracting, system planning, project development, implementation, operation, monitoring, and maintenance.

Title VI and Environmental Justice applies to all planning and project development programs, policies, and activities. Because the nondiscrimination requirements of Title VI extend to all programs and activities that receive federal funds and their respective sub-recipients and contractors, the concepts of Environmental Justice apply to all City projects, including those which do not involve Federal-aid funds. 

There are three fundamental Environmental Justice principles:

  • To avoid, minimize or mitigate disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects, including social and economic effects, on minority populations and low-income populations.
  • To ensure the full and fair participation by all potentially affected communities in the decision-making process.  
  • To prevent the denial of, reduction in, or significant delay in the receipt of benefits by minority populations and low-income populations.

Environmental Justice is an important part of the planning process and must be considered in all phases of planning. A truly integrated and effective planning process actively considers and promotes environmental justice within projects and groups of projects, across the total plan, and in policy decisions.At the start of the planning process, planners must determine whether Environmental Justice issues exist and use data and other information to:

  1. Determine benefits to and potential negative impacts on minority populations and low-income populations from proposed investments or actions;
  2. Quantify expected effects (total, positive and negative) and disproportionately high and adverse effects on minority populations and low-income populations; and
  3. Determine the appropriate course of action, whether avoidance, minimization, or mitigation.

If issues are not addressed at the planning stage, they may arise during project development, or later when they could be more difficult to mitigate and delay project decision.

Communities are constantly changing, so evaluation of human impacts must be given continuous attention throughout planning, project development, implementation, operation, and maintenance. Mitigation of any sort can cause negative as well as positive impacts. Be aware of who is being impacted and how.

Language Access

The Language Access Program seeks to help all immigrant and refugee residents, regardless of English proficiency, experience meaningful and equitable access to City information, programs, services, and civic engagement. The program aims to achieve these outcomes:

Welcoming City. Foster a welcoming environment where immigrant and refugee residents see themselves reflected and represented in culturally relevant communications from City departments and staff.

Seamless Integration. Support immigrant and refugee community members in successfully integrating into and participating in Seattle's civic, economic, and cultural life by providing in-language communication and outreach.

Resilience and Emergency Preparedness. Build an in-language information rapid dissemination system in communities and prepare community members to effectively respond to future emergencies.

Trust and Relationship. Establish meaningful two-way communication for residents to receive information and provide feedback.  

Visit the Language Access Program web page for more information: http://www.seattle.gov/iandraffairs/LA

Contact Information: Peggy Liao, Language Access Program and Policy Specialist

Peggy.Liao@seattle.gov (206) 615-0195 / (206) 688-0003

Contracting & Social Equity

The City of Seattle Contracting and Social Equity Program promotes equity in contracting for historically underutilized businesses with the goal to create a welcome, inclusive, and responsive environment for women and minority-owned businesses (WMBE). The City's WMBE Program, managed by FAS, supports WMBEs through outreach, engagement, and making aspirational WMBE use goals.

Social Responsibility in Contracting. The City of Seattle is committed to socially responsible procurement and promoting social equity through our contracts. We work to ensure open and fair procurements, competitive and fair pricing, environmentally sustainable solutions, best labor practices, access to equal benefits and utilization of women- and minority-owned businesses, when applicable in City bid decisions and contracts.

Priority Hire. The City of Seattle promotes access to construction careers for women, people of color and others with social and economic disadvantages. In 2015, the City created a priority hire program for City public works construction projects of $5 million or more, and, in 2017, expanded the program public/private partnership projects with significant City investment by prioritizes the hiring of residents that live in economically distressed areas, particularly in Seattle and King County.

Acceptable Work Sites. The City of Seattle implements stringent standards for acceptable behavior on City construction work sites that prohibit discrimination, bullying, hazing, and related behaviors-particularly those based upon race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, immigrant status, religious affiliation, gender identity or sexual orientation. Contractor of each tier must ensure an appropriate, productive and safe environment for all workers.

Accessibility and Design. The City of Seattle ensures all people's access to facilities, programs, and services by directing City departments and offices that manage, design, construct, alter, maintain and lease City facilities and properties to comply with accessible design and services

Green Purchasing. The City of Seattle promotes environmental stewardship and reducing greenhouse gas emissions when buying goods, materials, services and capital improvements. City departments strategize, promote and review outcomes, identifying market transformation opportunities, developing specifications and selection criteria, and educating vendors and end users.

Website: http://www.seattle.gov/purchasing-and-contracting/social-equity/wmbe

Contact: Mark Nakagawara mark.nakagawara@seattle.gov (206) 684-4542

Resources: http://www.seattle.gov/Documents/Departments/FAS/PurchasingAndContracting/WMBE/2019-City-of-Seattle-WMBE-Annual-Report-FAS.pdf