1951 - 1990

Disability Rights: 1975

Education for All Handicapped Children Act becomes law, requiring children with disabilities to receive a free public education appropriate to their individual needs and integration of students with disabilities with non-disabled students as much as possible.

Criminal Justice: 1975

In a case arising from the targeting of specific United Farm Workers union strike leaders for arrest, the state supreme court in Murgia v. Superior Court rules that a particular class of people cannot be singled out by law enforcement for criminal prosecution.

Race: 1975

Appellate court overrules Judge Gitelson’s decision in Crawford v. Board of Education, citing a U.S. Supreme Court decision that a court can order a school board to desegregate only if there is proof of narrowly-defined de jure segregation.

Immigrants' Rights: 1975

Federal Voting Rights Act is expanded to require bilingual ballots in areas with a threshold percentage of non-English speakers

Dissent: 1975

In White v. Davis, the California Supreme Court outlaws political surveillance by police officers at UCLA.

Congress abolishes HUAC.

LGBT Rights: 1975

Adams and SullivanAdams and Sullivan Richard Adams, an American, petitions the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) to allow his spouse Andrew Sullivan, an Australian, to remain in the U.S. The INS denies the petition and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ultimately upholds the INS decision.

Governor Edmund (Jerry) Brown signs the Brown Act, named for San Francisco Assembly member Willie Brown, decriminalizing private consensual sex between adults.

Labor: 1975

Governor Edmund (Jerry) Brown signs the Agricultural Labor Relations Act, which requires that farm laborers be allowed to vote whether to unionize and which union would represent them.

Criminal Justice: 1976

In Gregg v. Georgia, the U.S. Supreme Court ends the moratorium on capital punishment after several states enact new laws offering “guided discretion” for imposition of the death penalty.

Immigrants' Rights: 1976

Legislature passes the Chacon-Moscone Bilingual Education Act which gives public school students the right to be taught in a language they understand. The law requires bilingual and bicultural education in elementary schools where at least 15 students speak the same primary non-English language.

Censorship: 1976

Law enforcement officials sue two San Francisco reporters, Raul Ramirez and Lowell Bergman, and the San Francisco Examiner over their depiction in a series of stories about a Chinatown murder case; a jury awards a multi-million dollar judgment against the reporters. Journalists rally to their defense.

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