The Obama administration is bringing new faces and a renewed energy to the Justice Department office charged with handling disability rights cases.

Since Thomas E. Perez took the helm of the Office of Civil Rights at the Justice Department in October, a division pummeled by allegations of being politicized during the Bush administration is expanding and regaining credibility with civil rights groups.

Already the disability community is seeing the effects. In May alone, the federal government took legal action against four states for failure to provide community living options for residents with disabilities.

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The actions are coming with a mandate from the top. Civil rights is a stated priority of both President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder.

Most of all Perez says he’s working to bring the division back to its founding principles and says that under the previous administration some civil rights laws were simply ignored. Now the civil rights chief is on a hiring spree and says he’s working to bridge the divide between career staff and political appointees, reports The Washington Post. To read more click here.