Separation of people by race or ethnicity through custom, tradition, or socioeconomic factors rather than by law. De facto segregation differs from de jure segregation, which is the separation of people mandated by the state.
The Supreme Court held that de facto segregation, which results from merely private action, without the involvement, authorization, or action of the state, is not subject to constitutional remedy.
"White Only," "Colored Only," and similar signs were once common sights in the South and were not unknown in northern states during the Jim Crow era.
The Court varied the breadth of its interpretations of state responsibility but tended to apply a narrow state action doctrine in which all segregation that is not intentional, explicit, and officially sanctioned is defined as de facto and is, therefore, not subject to constitutional remedy. In Washington v. Davis
Keyes v. Denver School District No. 1
Race and discrimination
School integration and busing
Segregation, de jure
Washington v. Davis