Community Diversity Appreciation Teams

(Iowa Civil Rights Commission; 5/18/98; 0800)



19 Iowa communities boast diversity appreciation teams

Nineteen Iowa communities have now formed diversity appreciation teams. Perry is the latest to begin the work of building a local coalition or network of persons and organizations to develop and then implement a community-wide plan to (1) fight discrimination, (2) respond to reported hate crimes, and (3) teach the value of diversity. The Perry Team is called the Perry Networkers.

Other communities with teams include: Ames, Cedar Rapids, Cedar Valley (Waterloo/Cedar Falls), Charles City, Denison, Diverse-Cities (Iowa City/Coralville), Estherville, Hampton, Humboldt County, Marshalltown, MLK, Jr. (Council Bluffs), North Iowa (Mason City), Polk County, Quad Cities, Siouxland (Sioux City), Storm Lake, Tama County, and Webster County.

Team members typically include: mayors, city council persons, county supervisors, school superintendents, teachers, business leaders, advocacy group representatives, librarians, chambers of commerce, employers, real estate agents, landlords, county extension directors, county attorneys, county sheriffs, police chiefs, and other interested citizens.

Four years ago, the Iowa Civil Rights Commission (ICRC) began helping communities build diversity appreciation teams as a way to activate more people and organizations in the fight against discrimination.

For more information about teams or to obtain a copy of ICRC's bimonthly newsletter Team Diversity, call Don Grove at 515-281-8084 or 1-800-457-4416 ext. 1-8084. For a directory of all the Teams, visit the ICRC at http://www.state.ia.us/government/crc.

The mission of the Iowa Civil Rights Commission is to eliminate discrimination in Iowa. Currently, the Commission fights discrimination five ways: (1) investigating and resolving complaints alleging discrimination, (2) conducting a multifaceted public education program on anti-discrimination law and the value of diversity, (3) testing persons and organizations covered by the law to determine the nature and extent of discrimination in Iowa, (4) helping communities build diversity appreciation teams, and (5) promoting the use of study circles (small, democratic discussion groups) on racism and race relations.




(Contact: Don Grove 515-281-8084)