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Office of Equity and Human Rights

Realizing Equity. Enhancing the City of Portland.

Phone: 503-823-4433

Fax: 503-823-4420

421 SW 6th Avenue, Suite 500, Portland, OR 97204

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April 2013 Meeting Minutes

Date: April 3, 2013

Time: 4:00 p.m. –  6:30 p.m.

Location: 421 SW 6th Avenue, Suite 500 Portland, OR

Commission Attendees: Kyle Busse, Allan Lazo, Abdul Majidi, Deyalo Bennette, Aimee Samara, Moloy Good, Christine Rontal, John Verssue, Damon Isiah Turner, Donita Fry, Ashley Horne

Staff Attendee:  Jeff Selby

Approval of Agenda and Minutes / Welcome and Gathering

  • Kyle Busse’s arrival was delayed by work commitments. Damon Isiah Turner called the meeting to order at 4:12 p.m.
  • Attendees introduced themselves.
  • Allan Lazo suggested the minutes reflect that the Homeless Bill of Rights meeting was at Sisters of the Road, rather than Sisters, OR.
    • Approve meeting minutes from March 6, 2013
    • Abdul Majidi recommended that HRC move JTTF from Committee Updates to a discussion point on the agenda.
      • Approve Proposed Agenda as amended by Abdul Majidi


OEHR Update: Dante James

  • Reappointment process has been approved by Council. (Allan Lazo, Kyle Busse, Damon Isiah Turner, Ashley Horne, and Deyalo Bennette have been reappointed for HRC terms to expire November 30, 2015)
  • Dante has worked with Revenue Bureau on outreach strategy to underrepresented communities and discussed removing private collections from the process.
  • OEHR budget presentation to Council is April 5, 2013. Dante does not expect the “add back” to be approved.


Civil Rights Title VI Plan Update (plan is attached): Shoshanah Oppenheim

  • Shoshanah Oppenheim is the City’s Project Manager for ADA Title II and Civil Rights Title VI. She shared a draft of the Title VI Plan for the City and asked HRC for a letter of support. She will present the plan to Council on June 12.


Community Discovery Committee: Deyalo Bennette and Aimee Samara

  • Deyalo and Aimee asked the HRC to look at the invitation roster and volunteer to contact listed leaders they know, to personally invite them to the roundtables. The CDC will follow up with a formal invitation with RSVP-tracking capability.
  • A draft of the invitation text was handed out for comment.


HRC Budget: Alan Lazo

  • Alan presented the proposed budget that begins July 1, 2013 (attached).
    • The initial $50K budget was reduced to $30K to meet City budget-cut demands
    • The CPRC Training Subcommittee is likely to be underfunded.
    • The ability to do large educational events will be affected.
    • Alan asked about priorities for funding. Kyle mentioned that CDC efforts, community outreach, and CPRC should be priorities.


Fluoride Ordinance Discussion

  • Ashley Horne said there are strong opinions on both sides, and the issue is very divisive. Whatever the HRC decides to do, it should bring about positive change.
  • John Verssue asked what HRC’s voice would add to the broader conversation.
  • Abdul Majidi added that HRC should clearly communicate where it stands on the issue. (NOTE: The HRC cannot take positions on ballot measures)


Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF)

  • Aimee Samara attended the session on March 27, 2013 where City Council voted to accept a PPB report on collaborating with the FBI for counterterrorism cases. She asked if HRC should get involved again (HRC presented a 2011 analysis of the JTTF to Council
  • Abdul Majidi suggested that HRC continue to oppose the City’s involvement with the JTTF.
  • Allan Lazo asked if Chief Reese’s unclear report is a symptom of degradation that HRC warned about in 2011.
  • Aimee volunteered to anchor an HRC group that can bring action, since the JTTF reporting process is not working as promised. Kyle asked any interested commissioners to contact Aimee to participate.



Public Comment

  • Rick Nor said he is leading the opposition to fluoridation due to public safety and effectiveness.
  • Cliff Walker is on the NAACP Veterans Committee and said he is against fluoride. He is concerned about fluoride’s effects on asthma sufferers because of high rates of asthma in the African American community.
  • Raquel Boornhonesque is pro fluoridation and concerned about the dental health crisis. She said fluoride is naturally present in our environment and the Oregon Pediatric Association and Centers for Disease Control support fluoride.
  • Lavaun Heaster gave an update on the Portland Commission on Disability (PCOD).
    • Joe Vanderveer was elected as chair
    • PCOD has a new Public Safety subcommittee
    • They are working with Jeff Selby on public outreach and awareness strategies
    • The Executive Committee is assigning members to liaise with each City Councilor


Committee Updates

  • CPRC: Donita Fry
    • CPRC will continue to meet in the community-next meeting is at the Q Center.
    • Natasha Haunsperger has resigned from CPRC to focus on her work with the Slavic communities. CPRC will work with PPB to recommend a new member from PPB to replace her position.
    • Damon Isiah Turner announced that the Training Subcommittee will be receiving achievement medals at a PPB ceremony on April 16th.
    • Nominating Committee: Moloy Good
      • The committee received ten applications from a diverse pool.
      • The committee will conduct interviews and bring recommendations for candidates to the next HRC Meeting.
      • Housing Rights Task Force (HRTF): Moloy Good
        • The March 14th housing justice rally sponsored by “Connecting Communities of Oregon” in Salem attracted 80 people, including Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO) members.
        • Ten people testified—eight in favor of HB2890 at the public hearing on March 22 to repeal the statewide preemption on Inclusive Housing (House work sessions were held on April 15 and 17).
        • The Oregonian will post HRC’s letter to the editor response regarding Section 8 Housing on April 4th. (




  • Public Policy Committee: Ashley Horne
    • Ashley Horne attended and provided comment at the City Council hearing, representing the HRC in support of the earned sick leave ordinance. The ordinance passed.
    • Kyle mentioned that PCOD’s model of assigning liaisons to Council members is a good idea.
    • Deyalo Bennette shared a list of policy issues for HRC to potentially address, including the Restorative Justice Workshop’s work.


  • Human Trafficking Task Force (HTTF): Kyle Busse
    • PPB Assistant Chief Donna Henderson is enthusiastic about creating training videos that will introduce PPB staff to human trafficking issues.
    • HTTF is working on supporting efforts to provide tuition assistance to victims of human trafficking.


Additional Issues

  • Kyle announced the Yom HaShoah Program is April 8th for anyone interested in participating.
  • Food was provided by Pacific Pie Company and Portland Pedal Power.


Meeting adjourned at 6:40 p.m.