“I Wanted to Do Social Justice Work and Was Awed by What Could Be Accomplished through the Law.”


Professor Kimani Paul-Emile was featured in New Connections about her work in anti discrimination law.

Kimani hopes her research will be used to devise policies and protocols that balance the rights and interests of the multiple stakeholders, including patients, providers, and healthcare institutions. The goal of her research team is to share the resulting policies to hospitals across the country.


In another recent paper, “Kimani examines race-based anti-discrimination law in the U.S., comparing it to the more robust legal framework for disability discrimination.

Kimani maintains that “this is a particularly bad match with how race discrimination actually works in our society. Although overt racism remains, most disadvantages that blacks face spring from other sources, including implicit bias and structural inequality. Another mismatch between the law and reality springs from the fact that once a court finds discrimination based on race, the law has been interpreted to demand a remedy that is ‘colorblind.’ This precludes the government from taking account of race, even to make up for past state-sanctioned racial discrimination.”

Though Kimani acknowledges that broader anti-discrimination policy may not come out of Congress in the near future, she remains optimistic. “Today, we’re seeing an increase in the visibility and power of progressive social movements from #MeToo and #Timesup, to March for our Lives, and Black Lives Matter. I see promise for the future.”

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