Letter to the Editor: Retain Human Rights Office
To the Budgeteer: I have been a member of the Duluth Commission on Disabilities for over four years, serving two terms as the vice chair. I am deeply concerned and alarmed that Mayor Herb Bergson has decided to eliminate the Human Rights Office f...
To the Budgeteer:
I have been a member of the Duluth Commission on Disabilities for over four years, serving two terms as the vice chair. I am deeply concerned and alarmed that Mayor Herb Bergson has decided to eliminate the Human Rights Office from his 2007 budget proposal for the city, and has recommended rescinding the Human Rights Ordinance. As a woman and a person with a disability, I am keenly aware of the negative consequences this will have for our city government and community as a whole.
The creation of the Human Rights Ordinance and office was an acknowledgement by our community that we need to invest in safeguarding and promoting our human rights. It came at a time when the Commission on Disabilities was languishing. However, with the vitally needed support of the Human Rights Office and its staff, our membership has really grown into a hard-working commission, with committees that help advise city offices, and provide outreach education and advocacy for the community. The human rights officer is our official liaison and link to other city offices, as well as community organizations and businesses. This budget proposal would severely weaken our commission, as well as our community.
I strongly urge all citizens of Duluth to make their voices heard in support of preserving the Duluth Human Rights Office and ordinance. We must continue to invest our tax dollars in what we can never take for granted -- our human rights.