Cville Human Rights Commission Ready to Work

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Zan Tewksbury, manager of the Office of Human Rights for the City of Charlottesville Zan Tewksbury, manager of the Office of Human Rights for the City of Charlottesville

The new Office of Human Rights for the city of Charlottesville is getting ready to begin investigating complaints of discrimination in the community.

Zan Tewksbury, the first office manager, is settling in at City Hall. This is the second day on the job for the retired civil rights attorney. The Albemarle County native retired after 16 years practicing civil rights law and serving as a mediator in Portland, Oregon.

Tewksbury will take in complaints of discrimination involving private schools, housing, credit, and small employers in Charlottesville. Her job will be to investigate those allegations and determine if there's enough evidence for a hearing before the city's human rights commission.

"The hope is that this office can serve as a resource, in a more general sense, to raise awareness of what might be underlying these inequalities," Tewksbury stated.

City Council will appoint at least nine members to the human rights commission in October. The city manager says more than 30 people have applied. The office will begin taking complaints soon.

It is already hosting a monthly appointment with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The commission sends a representative from Richmond to Charlottesville to hear larger level discrimination complaints.

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