(Iowa Civil Rights Commission; 07/30/97; 0800)


For the fourth year in a row, the Iowa Civil Rights Commission (ICRC) resolved more cases than it received. In fiscal year 1997, from July 1, 1996 to June 30, 1997, the ICRC received 2,171 new complaints and resolved 2,202.

At the beginning of the fiscal year, ICRC's backlog, the number of cases waiting to be assigned to investigators, stood at 118. By the end of the year, the backlog had fallen to 78.

"As long as we can keep the backlog below 100, we can pretty much guarantee that the great majority of new cases will be resolved, settled, or investigated within one year," says Don Grove, ICRC's executive director.

Five years ago, the ICRC's backlog exceeded 600 cases. According to Grove, ICRC's progress in eliminating the backlog is due to the hard and smart work of staff, the twenty-two local human rights commissions in the State, and more than 100 dedicated volunteers.

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 discrimination complaints, (2) educating the public regarding 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 to fight discrimination locally, and (5) promoting the use of study circles on racism and race relations.



(Contact: Don Grove 515-281-8084)