Testing Reports and Publications
Navigating a Pandemic: When “English Only” Threatens Public Health
This report authored by the ERC used civil rights testing to identify language access barriers that exist in relation to information about COVID-19 testing. The investigation revealed significant concerns about language barriers to COVID-19 testing information for Limited English Proficient (“LEP”) individuals in the greater Washington, D.C. region.
From Click to Visit: A Civil Rights Testing Investigation About Online and In-Person Housing Accessibility for People with Disabilities – Report
The From Click to Visit report used civil rights testing to uncover numerous barriers to housing for people with disabilities. In particular, the report’s findings raise major concerns about website inaccessibility.
Behind Closed Doors: A Testing Investigation into Bias Against LGBT Job Applicants in Virginia – Report
Using matched pair testing, the ERC compared the experiences of straight job applicants with gay/queer job applicants during the hiring process. The report reveals test results that point to the existence of discrimination against gay and lesbian job applicants, illustrating the need for statewide anti-discrimination protections in Virginia.
All Reports by Program Area
• Next Generation Segregation: A Civil Rights Testing Investigation and Report
• Unlocking Discrimination: A DC Area Testing Investigation About Racial Discrimination
and Criminal Records Screening Policies in Housing
• Discrimination Against Transgender Women Seeking Access to Homeless Shelters
• Opening Doors: An Investigation of Barriers to Senior Housing for Same-Sex Couples
• Puertas Cerradas: Housing Barriers for Hispanics
• Navigating a Pandemic: When “English Only” Threatens Public Health
• Testing for Language Access in Charity Care Services in Washington State
• Access Denied: Washington’s Charity Care System, its Shortfalls, and the Effect on Low-Income Patients
• Acceso Denegado: El Sistema de Cuidado Caritativo de Washington, sus Deficiencias, y el Efecto a Pacientes de Bajos Ingresos
• Room for Change: An Investigation Exploring the Levels of Discrimination in Retail Stores Based on Gender Identity and Race
What is civil rights testing?
The ERC’s core strategy for identifying unlawful and unfair discrimination is civil rights testing. When the ERC identifies discrimination, it seeks to eliminate it through the use of testing data to educate the public and business community, support policy advocacy, conduct compliance testing and training, and, if necessary, take enforcement action. Our research reports highlight the testing investigations the ERC has engaged in over the years. Hover over the box to learn more.
Civil rights testing is an investigative tool used to gather evidence, usually in order to compare conduct to legal requirements or a policy. It involves one or more people covertly engaging in a transaction or interaction. Matched pair testing, a method the ERC commonly employs, is one type of civil rights test that compares treatment between two people based on one variable because all other differences are controlled for. Click here to learn more about testing.