Governor Wolf, PHRC and Governor’s Advisory Commission on African-American Affairs Issue Statement Condemning Racial Discrimination in Places of Public Accommodation

April 26, 2018

Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf, the Governor’s Advisory Commission on African-American Affairs, and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission released the following joint statement about acts of discrimination in places of public accommodation:

“We have shared public concerns over recent incidents in Pennsylvania, including the arrest of two Black men at a Philadelphia Starbucks, the treatment of five Black female golf club members at the Grandview Golf Course in Dover, York County, and racial slurs being shouted at a Black student by a Penn State student. These types of incidents have no place in Pennsylvania.

“We must do everything we can to curb the painful and far-reaching impact of bias, prejudice, and hate on individuals across the commonwealth. We must all work together to stand up for what is right and protect individuals in our communities from discrimination.

“Our commonwealth – especially our shared interests of better communities and opportunities for our families – is stronger when we are united and treat each other as equals. We must continue to work to combat discrimination, reject both avert and systemic racism, and bring fairness to our institutions at all levels.”

“The commonwealth has strengthened anti-discrimination policies for state employees, visitors to state buildings, and all contractors that do business with the commonwealth. However, we must ensure all commonwealth employers and places of public accommodation are ensuring no one is the subject of discrimination and violators must be held accountable.

“We urge business managers and owners to reflect upon the treatment of individuals who seek to patronize your businesses. Businesses are considered places of public accommodations and are subject to the anti-discrimination provisions of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA).”

The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act guarantees that individuals have the right to obtain all the accommodations, advantages, facilities and privileges of any public accommodation. If you feel a place of public accommodation has treated you differently because of your race, color, sex or any other protected class status, please visit our website: or call your regional office for more information on filing a complaint.

Pittsburgh Regional Office Harrisburg Regional Office Philadelphia Regional Office
301 Fifth Avenue
Suite 390, Piatt Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
333 Market Street
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Harrisburg, PA 17101-2210
110 North 8th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
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