Iowa Civil Rights Commission
March 14, 2002
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
211 East Maple Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50309-1858
Commissioner David Leshtz, Chairperson, brought the Commissionersí Meeting of the Iowa Civil Rights Commission to order.
Present were:† Commissioner Alicia Claypool, Commissioner Tim Tutt, Commissioner Gilberto Solivan via ICN, Commissioner Maria Waterman, Commissioner Constance Gronstal, via speaker phone, and Commissioner David Leshtz. Also present were: Corlis Moody, Executive Director, Ron Pothast, Business Manager and Araceli Goode, Executive Secretary.
Motion was made by Commissioner Claypool and seconded by Commissioner Waterman to approve the February 8, 2002 Commissionersí Meeting Minutes, with the following corrections: on page one, under Commissionersí Report heading and Commissioner Waterman report, that the words "Attended", be changed to "Informed the Commissioners about". The motion passed unanimously.
No Public or Press present.
Commissioner Leshtz - Distributed articles regarding Indian Mascots to the Commissioners. Discussed the Latino Conference in Iowa City on April 27, 2003. Governor Vilsack was invited. Commissioner Claypool had the brochure regarding the Latino Conference and had copies made for the Commissioners. Informed the Commissioners of the 13th annual Pow Wow, April 12 - 14, 2002, at Carver Hawkeye Arena, Iowa City, hosted by the American Indian Student Association (AISA). A panel discussion is being organized regarding Free Speech - Hate Speech: When is Free Speech Hate Speech and When Can It Be Regulated.†
Alicia Claypool - Informed the Commissioners had been very involved in the attempts to defeat the English Only Bill that had not worked.
Charlotte Nelson, Executive Director of the Status of Women Commission, presentation on the disparity of wages between men and women followed. She distributed a brochure that highlighted some of the Commissionís history, projects, and publications. The information is available on the web at www.state.ia.us/dhr/sw. Discussed the two federal laws Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA) and Title 7 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and their part in narrowing the disparity of wages for women and the need for strengthening them, which is what the bills pending in Congress are supposed to do: Pay Check Fairness Act and Fair Pay Act. April 16, 2002, Equal Pay Day will be observed.† Explained that April 16, is a Tuesday and is selected to state the disparity of wages earned by women during a pay period. On average, to equal menís wages during a pay period ending on Friday, womenís pay period would end on Tuesday.
Executive Director Corlis Moody brought the Commissionersí attention to the Closure report and the Budget Report enclosed in their packets.† Reported she and Ron Pothast had presented before the Health and Human Rights Appropriation Subcommittee a report on what the Commission accomplished in the past year. More budget cuts are expected for FY 2003, but hopefully no further cuts will occur the rest of this FY 2002.
Informed the Commissioners of the appointment of Dinh VanLo to the Commission. He is to be on board in May 2002. Information is included in their packets.
Informed the Commissioners that Rick Autry, Assistant Attorney General, had appeared before the Appellate Court last week to discuss one of the cases that has been here for awhile. The Courtís decision has not been rendered.
Commissioner Leshtz distributed an article that Commissioner Claypool had brought, from Des Moines Register regarding a studentís complaint based on Sexual Orientation. He brought forth the letter that, last Fall, the Commissioners had written to the Department of Education supporting their Public Schools Discrimination Policy, which included Sexual Orientation. He suggested another letter be written in the support to include Sexual Orientation in this policy. All agreed.
Commissioner Claypool proceeded with the Sexual Orientation Subcommittee Report. Has spoken with Rich Eychaner, a leader in the Gay and Lesbian Community in Iowa, regarding ideas on direction to go with the forum.† Suggestion is to ask the question, "How can schools, communities and families address the problems encountered by GLBT Youth in the school setting today?" Recommended to work with organizations that have already been involved in addressing this issue starting with the Department of Education, School Board Association, ISEA, school administrators, the PTA, GLSEN (Gays Lesbian Straight Educators Network), Gay Student Alliances, churches, school counselors, social workers, local colleges in the area, maybe the state universities, the AEAs. In addition, some key businesses in Iowa that have strong non-discrimination policies such as Wells Fargo and Quest, as well as some non-profit organizations such as the Young Womenís Resource Center in Des Moines. Discussion followed. The Commissioners decided to proceed with a Forum on Sexual Orientation to occur sometime in the Fall of 2002. Commissioners Claypool and Waterman will work with staff to organize the event. The next step is setting date, time, and contacting the organizations for participation.
Discussion followed about hosting a meeting with all the local commissions. Corlis will contact the locals through the established "Locals Chat Room" and approach with the possibility of meeting in April or at a future date to discuss the two or three top issues they are dealing with and what they need help with. Other suggestions to accommodate were to send their issues to the Commission if unable to attend and use of ICN facilities.†
The Commissioners selected the following dates for the next meetings:
††††††††††† April 11, 2002 - ICRC, Des Moines
††††††††††† May 9, 2002 - Ft. Dodge, Iowa
††††††††††† June 13, 2002 - Davenport, Iowa
The meeting adjourned at 12:15 PM.
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Minutes submitted by Araceli Goode, Executive Secretary
Minutes approved April 11, 2002
††††††††††††††††††††††† Corlis S. Moody, Executive Director