Title VI Requirements for FHWA Subrecipients


Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and related non-discrimination statutes require that recipients of federal financial assistance ensure that no one is excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or subjected to discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability in any federally-assisted program and activity. Title VI should not be confused with Title VII, which prohibits employment discrimination.

For Title VI purposes, the term “program or activity” means all of the operations of a department, agency, special district, or other instrumentality of a local government. For example, if a local agency’s public works department receives any federal financial assistance, Title VI program requirements apply to every part of that public works department whether federally funded or not. However, Title VI program requirements do not apply to all other departments of the local agency unless the federal assistance is transferred to such departments.

While the original Title VI law only prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color and national origin, FHWA’s “Title VI Program”  incorporates related statutes that have been passed since 1964 and, therefore, prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, and disability. Subrecipients must also comply with federal policies regarding environmental justice and limited-English proficiency. The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT)’s Title VI implementing regulations are contained in 49 CFR Part 21 and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)’s Title VI regulations are in 23 CFR Part 200.

Agencies that receive federal funds from CDOT are referred to as subrecipients. Subreciepients that receive FHWA funds through CDOT are required to establish a Title VI program that is subject to review by CDOT pursuant to 23 CFR 200.9(b)(7).  The purpose of the program is to not only prohibit discrimination but to ensure non-discrimination through policies, procedures and regular program reviews.

CDOT’s Civil Rights & Business Resource Center (CRBRC) monitors CDOT subrecipients for Title VI compliance. The following is a summary of items that are required as part of a subrecipient’s Title VI program.

Title VI Plan

Subrecipients are required to submit a Title VI Plan (including a Language Assistance Plan) to the CRBRC that documents procedures used for complying with FHWA’s Title VI requirements.

Creating your Title VI Plan:

CDOT Compliance Reviews

CDOT is responsible for conducting compliance reviews of its subrecipients. Compliance reviews focus on determining whether the subrecipient has met the criteria of FHWA’s Title VI program and how effective the subrecipient is at ensuring nondiscrimination. CDOT staff may evaluate the subrecipient’s Title VI Plan and related documents, interview individuals with Title VI responsibilities, and/or conduct a site visit as part of the process.

Completed Title VI and Language Assistance Plans should be readily available for CDOT review.  If you would like assistance in completing these plans, contact the CDOT Office of Environmental Justice & Equity at the information provided below.

Title VI Resources

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