Commission on Human Rights
KY Human Rights Commission honors the late Wendell Ford with resolution

Press Release Date:  Monday, February 16, 2015  
Contact Information:  Victoria Stephens
Commission Headquarters: 1.800.292.5566
Stephens's Mobile Telephone: 502.641.0760

The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights at its meeting last week in Frankfort unanimously passed a resolution in honor of the late former Kentucky Governor and former longtime U.S. Senator Wendell Ford. The well-known, 90-year old statesman died on January 22.

The resolution states: “The late Wendell H. Ford made significant contributions to civil rights efforts during his long and illustrious political career. Senator Ford supported legislation setting aside 10 percent of federal highway funds to women and minority contractors. He opposed ending special funding for minority and women owned businesses, and he opposed banning affirmative action requirements in hiring persons by employers receiving federal funding. In addition, Senator Ford was instrumental in the passage of the 1993 motor voter law that requires state governments to allow voter registration opportunities to any eligible person who applies for or renews a driver's license, thus making it easier for everyone to vote.”

As a member of the Kentucky General Assembly in 1966, he voted to pass the Kentucky Civil Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination. It was the first such state law passed in a southern state.

“The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights is proud to recognize the late Senator Ford,” said Kentucky Commission on Human Rights Executive Director John J. Johnson. “He dedicated his life to representing Kentuckians and to standing as a leader for the people of his state and the nation,” he said. 

The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights is the state government authority that enforces the Kentucky Civil Rights Act (Kentucky Revised Statutes Chapter 344), and, through its affiliation with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, enforces federal civil rights laws.

The Kentucky Civil Rights Act makes it illegal to discriminate against people in the areas of employment, financial transactions, housing and public accommodations. Discrimination is prohibited in the aforementioned areas based on race, color, religion, national origin, gender, and disability. In employment, discrimination is further prohibited on the basis of age (40-years and over) and on the basis of tobacco-smoking status. In housing, discrimination is further prohibited based on familial status, which protects people with children in the household under the age of 18-years old, and it protects women who are pregnant. It is also a violation of the law to retaliate against a person for complaining of discrimination to the commission.

For more information, contact the commission at 1.800.292.5566. For information about the commission and civil rights, visit the website at

For news about civil rights and information pertaining to protected classes, visit the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights Facebook and Twitter sites. Directly link to the sites from the commission website address listed above.