When and How to File a Discrimination Complaint

California county welfare departments may not discriminate against you on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin (including language, political affiliation, disability, marital status, age, gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, or any other applicable bases. This means that these agencies must provide the same aid, benefits and services to all individuals and groups, except as authorized by federal or state law or the Governor's executive order.

If you believe that you have been discriminated against, you may take one or all of the following actions:

You may talk with the county welfare department's Civil Rights Representative: State the basis of the discrimination (for example, age, race, sex), the specific allegation (who, what, when) and the resolution you are seeking. You have 180 days from the date the alleged discrimination occurred to make a complaint or request an investigation. If the representative fails to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction, you may request an investigation. The county will investigate the complaint and inform you of the outcome.

You may file a discrimination complaint with CDSS by e-mail, writing or calling:
California Department of Social Services
Civil Rights
744 P Street, M.S. 9-7-041
Sacramento, CA 95814
Call: (916) 654-2107
E-Mail: crb@dss.ca.gov

You may call toll free at (866) 741-6241; collect calling at (800) 688-4486; or you may call via the California Relay Service operator at (800) 735-2929.

You may also submit a "Complaint of Discrimination" form by clicking on your preferred language below.

The form cannot be completed online.  Please print the form, fill it out, then mail it to the address above.  The use of this form is not required.  You may also fax your complaint to (916) 653-9332.

You may also file a discrimination complaint with the appropriate federal agency: If your discrimination complaint involves the Food Stamp Program , write to:
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of Assistant Secretary of Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
 Washington D.C. 20250-9410
(866) 632-9992

For all other discrimination complaints relating to any other public assistance programs, write to:
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Office of Civil Rights
Western Region
 90 Seventh Street, Suite 10-100 
San Francisco, CA 94103