Iowa Civil Rights Commission
211 E. Maple, 2nd Floor
Des Moines, Iowa
September 22, 2000
The Iowa Civil Rights Commission board meeting was held September 22, 2000 at the Iowa Civil Rights Commission ICN room at 10:00 AM. Present were Robert Smith via ICN, Flora Lee via ICN, Alicia Claypool, David Leshtz, Jack Morlan, Mohamad Khan, Rachael Scherle, Corlis Moody, Executive Director and Araceli Goode, Executive Secretary. Also present were Mr. Goldman, attorney, Ms Kennedy, attorney, Mr. and Mrs. Blackford, Rick Autry and Teresa Baustian, A.A.J.s.
Approval of Board Minutes
Robert Smith, Chair, brought the meeting to order. The first item of business was the approval of the August 25, 2000 board minutes. A motion was made by David Leshtz and seconded by Alicia Claypool to accept the board minutes as written. The motion passed by a vote of 6ayes. Flora Lee abstained from voting.
The next item of business was the Commissioner’s reports.
Robert Smith - No report
Mohamad Khan - No report
Alicia Claypool - Brought to the attention of the commission the three newspaper articles regarding various aspects of civil rights discrimination: racial discrimination, voting denial to released criminals of which african-americans make up a high percent, and local article on gay men being harassed. She also presented an article in Newsweek to be copied and distributed to commissioners.
Flora Lee - No report
David Leshtz - Thanked Corlis Moody and the 6 staff members that were at the dinner and public meeting forum in Iowa City with local civil rights activates September 21, 2000. He stated that was a perfect example of outreach to the public.
Jack Morlan - No report
Rachel Scherle - No report
Blackford VS Casey’s
The next item of business was the Blackford VS Casey’s case. A motion was made by David Leshtz and seconded by Mohamad Khan to vote on the case without further discussion. The motion passed unanimously. A motion was made by Flora Lee and seconded by David Leshtz that the commission vote in favor of the complainant in the Blackford VS Casey’s Inc. Roll call vote was Robert Smith - No, Mohamad Khan - Yes, Alicia Claypool - Yes, David Leshtz - Yes, Jack Morlan - No, Rachel Scherle - No. The motion carried with a vote of four to 3 in favor of the complainant.
Further discussion followed with recommendations of procedure to the commission being presented by Teresa Baustian regarding adopting or not the Findings of Fact as outlined in the brief by Mr. Goldman, attorney for the complainant. Mr. Goldman explained how the proposed remedies were complied. Ms Kennedy made an objection to the complainant’s attorney advising the commission at this time. After discussion, motion was made by David Leshtz and seconded by Alicia Claypool to accept the options and recommend reward as recommended on page 83 of Finding of Fact. Discussion followed. David Leshtz withdrew previous motion and the commission was advised to go into closed session to discuss the allotting of reward.
The motion was made by Jack Morlan and seconded by Robert Smith. Roll call vote was Robert Smith - yes, Mohamad Khan - Yes, Alicia Claypool - Yes, David Leshtz - Yes, Jack Morlan - Yes, Rachel Scherle - yes.
The Commission went into closed session at this time.
The commission returned from closed session. The following motion was made by Rachel Scherle and seconded by David Leshtz: We the commission move the following Findings of Fact. Blackford is disabled by his disability of alcoholism. Casey had knowledge of Blackford’s disability. Casey’s failed to reasonably accommodate Blackford’s disability and award the following judgement for past compensation of lost wages and benefits of $143,905.00 plus $20,000 for emotional distress for a total of $163,905.00. Roll call vote was Robert Smith - Yes, Mohamad Khan - Yes, David Leshtz - Yes, Alicia - Yes, Flora - Yes, Rachel - Yes. The motion passed unanimously. A motion was made by Jack Morlan and seconded by Rachel Scherle that at a later time the commission would discuss and decide attorney fees for this case. Roll call vote was Mohamad Khan - Yes, Alicia Claypool - Yes, Flora Lee - Yes, David Leshtz - Yes, Rachel Scherle - Yes, and Robert Smith - Yes. Motion passed unanimously.
For the next item of business the chair recognized David Leshtz at this time. He brought forth the information about the formation of the subcommittee on Sexual Orientation and the commission’s earlier commitment to support the Governor’s Executive Order Seven that prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation. He offered the following resolution: See attachment 1. The motion was made by David Leshtz and seconded by Alicia Claypool to pass the resolution. Discussion followed. Robert Smith called a recess while information was faxed to Flora Lee and Robert Smith.
Robert Smith called the meeting back from recess. Rick Autry explained the process of submitting legislation and the deadlines. He also brought to the attention of the commissioners the twenty-four hour prior announcement procedure of agendas of public meetings to the media. After further discussion, Alicia withdrew her second to previous motion made by David Leshtz. A motion was made by Alicia and seconded by Rachel Scherle to move the meeting from October 27th to October 20th, 2000 at 9:00 AM to discuss the resolution. Motion passed unanimously. Flora requested an ICN arrangement at the Western Hill AEA 12.
Corlis asked the commissioners to decide if they wanted to write up the decision on Blackford VS Casey’s case or have the staff write it. The consensus was for the staff to write it up.
After the October 20th, the next meeting will be December 1, 2000.
Recognition of the Public and Press
No press present.
Corlis brought up the project with NCCJ to do testing of bars and the dress codes. ICRC would mostly do the training of the testers and the NCCJ would provide the testers. Corlis will have more information written up regarding this project to present to the commissioners at the next meeting for further discussion.
Alicia Claypool requested to have guidance for Reviewing Cases for future cases. Corlis stated that training could be provided when next case for review was presented.
Motion was made by Jack Morlan and seconded by Mohamad Khan to adjourn. Motion passed unanimously. Chair adjourned the meeting.