Cville Council Reaches Human Rights Commission Compromise - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Cville Council Reaches Human Rights Commission Compromise

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Charlottesville councilors heard from the public once again Monday night about a controversial topic more than a year in the making: the proposed human rights commission.

The commission would investigate allegations of discrimination in the city. The original proposal was on the table in February, followed by an alternative plan from Councilor Dave Norris, in which the city would contract with a third-party organization to investigate discrimination.

Now, Vice Mayor Kristin Szakos has added another amendment in attempts to come up with a middle ground.

Still, people want to see a commission with full enforcement power.

"The Jones-Ellis proposal, the Chamber proposal and the new amendments offered by Councilor Szakos eliminate the human rights commission. They put all the power in the hands of a human rights director, an advocate that pretty much directs complaints elsewhere," said human rights activist Walt Heinecke.

Monday night, council came to a compromise and approved a version of the commission that would allow the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Public Housing Authority to handle most cases.

The groups would use mediation to resolve most cases, but an appeal process would be available for the remaining few.

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