Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

AGO 1975 NO. 1 >

(1) Neither the superintendent of public instruction nor the state board of education has the authority under any existing statute or constitutional provision to formulate and implement a state‑wide [[statewide]] affirmative or corrective action policy for disadvantaged groups such as women or racial minorities which would be binding on all local school districts in their employment of personnel; under the supervisory authority granted to him by Article III, § 23 of the state constitution, however, the state superintendent of public instruction may require local school districts, in connection with their employment of personnel, to formulate and implement their own affirmative action policies for such disadvantaged groups, subject to such constitutional standards as may be applicable to those kinds of programs. (2) Such a requirement may be enforced by a mandamus action against any noncomplying school districts. (3) The state superintendent of public instruction has the authority to enforce federal affirmative action programs by refusing to disburse federal funds to noncomplying school districts.

AGO 1981 NO. 14 >

(1) Section 5, chapter 259, Laws of 1981, does not withdraw any of the preexisting authority of cities or towns to enact ordinances to eliminate discrimination or create city human rights agencies.(2) To the extent that § 5, chapter 259, Laws of 1981, does grant additional powers, however, it applies only to first-class cities with a population of over 125,000 inhabitants.(3) The cities thus specified in § 5, chapter 259, supra, are authorized to provide administrative remedies consistent with those in the state law against discrimination, RCW 49.60.250, 49.60.260 and 49.60.270.  (4) The word "prescribed" in § 5, chapter 259, Laws of 1981, should be interpreted as "proscribed."

AGO 1976 NO. 17 >

It is not contrary to the Washington state law against discrimination, chapter 49.60 RCW, for a person to discriminate on the basis of sex, age or religion in selecting a roommate with whom to share living quarters, or for a person to specify in an advertisement for a roommate that the roommate must be of a particular sex, age or religion, or for a newspaper to publish an advertisement for a roommate when the advertisement contains such a specification.

AGO 1973 NO. 21 >

The antidiscrimination provisions of §§ 3 and 6, chapter 141, Laws of 1973, do not now require the same life insurance premium rates to be charged to men and women of the same age in lieu of a continuing use by life insurers in this state of a reduced age factor in computing premium rates for women such as heretofore permitted by RCW 48.12.150 and RCW 48.23.350, and as apparently contemplated by RCW 48.23.180.

AGO 1951 NO. 21 >

An excise tax levied by a city on persons distributing and selling electrical energy measured by the gross revenues from such business, but exempting from the tax revenues derived from the sale of electricity to manufacturers, is not invalidated by reason of such exemption.

AGLO 1974 NO. 100 >

(1) To the extent that RCW 49.60.030, a part of the state law against discrimination, recognizes a civil right to engage in insurance transactions without discrimination because of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical handicap, the state insurance commissioner is not required or authorized to enforce this right by means of the disapproval of insurance policy forms under RCW 48.18.110.