Discrimination and Your Rights

Explanation of Discrimination and your protection under the law.

Begin online Call 314-622-4800


Illegal discrimination is when:

  • You are treated differently from others in a similar situation
  • You are harmed by treatment
  • You are treated this way because of your membership in a protected class
  • Your request for a reasonable accommodation due to a disability is refused without a valid business reason.

The Fair Housing Act which is a combination of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 and the Fair Housing Amendments of 1988 makes it illegal to discriminate in housing sales or rentals or in housing lending, advertising, insurance appraisals and zoning on the basis of :

  • Race
  • Color
  • National Origin
  • Disability
  • Sex
  • Religion
  • Familial Status (children under 18)

St. Louis City Ordinance No. 67119, as amended, also prohibits discrimination on the basis of:

  • Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity
  • Source of Income (must be legal)
  • Age (40 and above, Employment)

 Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended prohibits discrimination in hiring, promotion, discharge, pay, fringe benefits, job training, referral, and other aspects of employment on the basis of:

  • Race 
  • Color
  • Religion
  • Sex
  • National Origin
  • Disability
  • Age

Retaliation against a person who files a charge of discrimination, participates in an investigation, or opposes an unlawful employment practice is prohibited by all of these Federal laws.


The Investigation

Once you have filed a charge, CREA will assign your case to an investigator, who will contact you to discuss your complaint and answer any questions you may have.  

Before you meet with your investigator for the first time, note the details of what happened to you, including the dates, times, and who was present or involved. Make a list of possible witnesses, including their phone numbers and addresses.

The investigator gathers evidence by conducting interviews, obtaining witness statements, and reviewing written information. As the Charging Party, you must prove that illegal discrimination has taken place. The investigator will explain the "elements" of your case that you must prove.

CREA will contact the person who has been accused of discrimination, known as the Respondent. CREA will send the Respondent a copy of the charge document, as well as a request for information and a written response to the charge.

After receiving a reply from the Respondent, the assigned investigator will again discuss your case with you and determine how to proceed.

Begin online Call 314-622-4800

What to Expect

Charge of Discrimination - The First Step

If you feel you have been discriminated against, call CREA at 314-622-3301 to speak with an investigator. You also can visit our office in the Carnahan Courthouse, 1114 Market St., Suite 626 in Downtown St. Louis.

To help us learn more about your situation, please fill out the Charge of Discrimination form below. You can fill it out and send it to us by e-mail or you can print out a copy, fill it out and fax or mail it to us. To avoid delays in processing, please submit only one Form to CREA (either by mail, e-mail, fax or in person) regarding the same matter.

The Form provides us with information we can use to help us serve you. It is not a formal complaint. Once we receive your completed questionnaire, we will review it and then contact you for more information. You do not have to fill out the form in order to contact us about filing a charge.

To complete the Charge of Discrimination form, click here

Additional Information

Please note: The Civil Rights Enforcement Agency has jurisdiction within St. Louis City limits. A charge of discrimination must be filed within 180 days of the date the incident under consideration occurred. If your situation does not qualify for investigation by our agency, we will refer you to another agency for assistance.


Civil Rights Enforcement Agency

(314) 622-3301

1114 Market Street
Suite 626
St. Louis, Mo 63101

Monday - Friday 8 AM - 5 PM

Contact the Civil Rights Enforcement Agency

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