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Civil Rights

Truth and Justice, Unity and Difference

All men and women are “created in the image of the one God and equally endowed with rational souls,” having “the same nature and the same origin.” (CCC 1934). The equality of men and women “rests essentially on their dignity, as persons and the rights that flow from it” (1935). Unfortunately, while we were “created for freedom,” we also bear “the wound of original sin, which constantly draws man towards evil.” (Centesimus annus, 25).

The unavoidable presence of evil in the world, however, is not a justification for inaction. As Pope Leo XIII explains, “no man may with impunity outrage that human dignity which God Himself treats with great reverence.” (Rerum novarum, 40).

Truth calls for the elimination of every trace of racial discrimination. - St. John XXIII, Pacem in terris, no. 86

That is why the Second Vatican Council reminds the world that, “with respect to the fundamental rights of the person, every type of discrimination, whether social or cultural, whether based on sex, race, color, social condition, language or religion, is to be overcome and eradicated as contrary to God’s intent.” (Gaudium et spes, 29).

In response to the horror of racist ideology, Pope Pius XI reminds the Church that “God’s sun shines on every human” (Mit Brennender Sorge10), and within the Church “there is but one country for all nations and tongues” (18). Society, including the specific society that is the University of Dallas, has an obligation to protect the natural rights of every man and woman precisely because society “was intended by the Creator for the full development of individual possibilities” (30).

Our Commitment

As part of its living out of the Catholic faith, the University of Dallas is committed to providing work, living, and learning environments that are free of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. The university does not tolerate conduct that is inconsistent with this commitment. Its Civil Rights Policy represents the policy of the University of Dallas, and is also in fulfillment of its duties under federal and state law, including, but not limited to, Title VI, Title VII, Title IX, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and their accompanying administrative regulations.

The University Community

The University of Dallas is a Catholic university, with a vocation “dedicated to research, to teaching and to the education of students who freely associate with their teachers in a common love of knowledge.” (St. John Paul II, Ex corde ecclesiae, 1). In fulfillment of that vocation, the university must be an authentic human community, with a unity that “springs from a common dedication to the truth, a common vision of the dignity of the human person and, ultimately, the person and message of Christ” (21).

The motto of the University of Dallas is veritatem, justitiam diligite, because we seek to foster a community in pursuit of truth and justice. To that end, this community “is animated by a spirit of freedom and charity,” and “is characterized by mutual respect, sincere dialogue, and protection of the rights of individuals” (Ibid.).

Aristotle reminds us in the Politics that we are, by nature, social animals, and therefore it is only in community that we can fully strive towards human flourishing. Our need for community also reminds us of our obligation to protect it. The pursuit of truth and justice is not for the select few. It is the honor, and the responsibility, of the entire community. As St. John Paul II explains, that primary responsibility for protecting human rights belongs to individuals and the smaller groups and communities they form within society (Centesimus annus, 48).

The University of Dallas, and the individual members of this community, are one such group, with an obligation to respect the dignity of others, and to seek to protect them from injustice. As a member of this community, you have the opportunity to help.

Building a Stronger and More Just Community 

Anyone who has experienced or become aware of discrimination, harassment, or some other form of discrimination or harassment is strongly encouraged to report it to the Office of Civil Rights and Title IX, which is responsible for overseeing compliance with the Civil Rights Policy, including coordinating supportive measures to those who may be victims, and investigating allegations when a formal complaint has been filed.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the University's civil rights policies or the implementation of those policies, please contact:

Inelda Acosta Ed.D., pHCLE        

Director and Title IX Coordinator

Inelda Acosta Ed.D., pHCLE
Haggar Student Center, First Floor 253
Direct: (972) 721-5056
Facsimile: (972) 265-5712

LaCoya Williams

Deputy Civil Rights/Title IX Coordinator

LaCoya Williams
Human Resources Department
Cardinal Farrell Hall, 140

 Monica Heckman

Deputy Civil Rights/Title IX Coordinator

Monica Heckman
Ed Maher Athletics Center

Confidential Resources

The university always seeks to maintain the privacy of those involved in the reporting and complaint process, keeping in mind the university's obligation to protect the entire university community. In some situations, however, someone might want to seek support and assistance separate from the university's normal reporting process. Consequently, the university has designated various confidential reporters who can assist members of our community to get the assistance they need without having to disclose the identity of the parties to other university officials.

Disability Accommodations

Society was intended by the Creator for the full development of individual possibilities, and for the social benefits, which by a give and take process, every one can claim for his own sake and that of others. - Pope Pius XI, Mit Brennender Sorge, no. 30

One aspect of making the University of Dallas a place of equal opportunity is the provision of reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities. The university is committed to facilitating the participation of people with disabilities in the life of the university community by providing reasonable accommodations that provide meaningful access to the employment and educational opportunities provided by the university.

For students seeking disability accommodations, formal requests are generally submitted through an online request form that is available at In addition, you can find out more about student disability services and the documentation that should be submitted with a student disability accommodation request at the Student Disability Services web page:

For employees seeking disability accommodations, formal requests are generally submitted directly to the University of Dallas Human Resources Department. You may contact the HR Department in person on the first floor of Cardinal Farrell Hall, via email at, or by phone at (972) 721-5382.

For all other disability accommodation requests, please contact Accessibility Services.