The basics of public accomadations laws in Kentucky. In the Commonwealth of Kentucky Federal and state laws prohibit discrimination against certain protected groups in businesses and places that are considered “public accommodations.”
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Pub.L. 88-352, 78 Stat. 241, enacted July 2, 1964) was a landmark piece of legislation in the United States that outlawed major forms of discrimination against racial, ethnic, national and religious minorities and women. It ended unequal application of voter registration requirements and racial segregation in schools, at the workplace and by facilities that served the general public (“public accommodations”).
The definition of a “public accommodation” may vary depending upon the law at issue (i.e. federal or state), and the type of discrimination involved (i.e. race discrimination or disability discrimination). Most citizens understand that public and government owned facilities must be open to the general public. Privately owned businesses, however, are also subject to the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Government-owned/operated facilities and services. Government-owned facilities include courthouses, jails, hospitals, parks, and other places owned and operated by federal, state and local government. Government-operated services, programs, or activities provided by federal, state, or local governments include transportation systems and government benefits programs (such as welfare assistance).
Privately-owned/operated businesses and buildings. Privately-owned businesses and facilities that offer certain goods or services to the public — including food, lodging, gasoline, and entertainment — are considered public accommodations for purposes of federal and state anti-discrimination laws. For purposes of disability discrimination, the definition of a “public accommodation” is even more broad, encompassing most businesses that are open to the public (regardless of type).
Kurt A. Scharfenberger