On October 7, 2023, California Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed Senate Bill 403 (“SB-403”), legislation that would have been the first state-wide ban on caste discrimination in the United States. We previously reported on SB-403 here.
Governor Newsom released a veto message calling SB-403 “unnecessary.” The message further explained his rationale that “discrimination based on caste is already prohibited” under California law, which “already prohibits discrimination based on sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, and other characteristics, and state law specifies that these civil rights protections shall be liberally construed.”
California employers should take note of this development and the current focus on caste and other dimensions of ancestry to ensure appropriate compliance with existing discrimination laws.
- Senior Counsel
- Senior Attorney