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The City of Portland, Oregon

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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March 2013 Meeting Minutes

Date: March 6, 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

Staff Attendee:  Jeff Selby

Approval of Agenda and Minutes / Welcome and Gathering

  • Kyle Busse adjusted the agenda to remove the Communications Discussion from the agenda due to Ashley’s absence.
    • Approve meeting minutes from February 6, 2012
      • Abdul Majidi and Christine Rontal abstained during vote
      • Kyle Busse congratulated welcomed HRC Commissioner, John Verssue.
      • Attendees introduced themselves.


Public Comment

  • Rob Hadley from Oregon Coalition for Humanity asked HRC to support his organization’s campaign to ask City of Portland to stop buying products made with conflict-laden minerals (cell phones, electronic devices, etc. from the Congo, etc.). Commissioner Fritz advised the Coalition to ask the HRC for support.
  • Mary Eng was advised to address the HRC by Commissioner Fritz. Mary is interested in the issues of human trafficking, minimum wage, FBI racial profiling, technology, email security, fair trials, blogging rights, and open courts. She thinks the courts in Oregon should have internet access so participants can Tweet, like they do in the U.K. She would also like to see a Senior Cyber Center created, so unemployed Gen Y people can teach seniors about tweeting and emailing.



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 is asking for HRC input on the draft by March 15 and outreach support for communicating upcoming open houses.


Office of Equity and Human Rights (OEHR) Update: Dante J. James, OEHR Director

  • Commissioner Fritz has convened a working group with Matthew Robinson and Baruti Artharee from the Mayor’s Office; Captain Pat Walsh from PPB; and Dante James to meet on a regular basis to discuss the DOJ lawsuit process.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding (attached) was signed by Kyle Busse and Dante James to define and strengthen the working relationship between HRC and OEHR.


Rules and Procedures Update: Tracy Reeve, Senior Deputy City Attorney

  • The HRC was reminded of Public Meeting/Records law. A copy of the handout is attached.
  • If a commissioner has a specific question about Public Meeting/Records law, please contact Jeff Selby and he will forward to Tracy Reeve.


Vice Chair Election

  • Aimee Samara said three commissioners asked her to run and she was initially going to run for Vice Chair, but as she learned that Damon Isiah Turner was available, she decided to nominate Damon.
    • Nominate Damon Isiah Turner for Vice Chair of the HRC
      • Damon Isiah Turner abstained during vote


Committee and Liaison Updates

  • Community & Police Relations Committee (CPRC): Abdul Majidi, Jeff Selby, Allan Lazo
    • DOJ update and discussion
    • Meetings will be held throughout the community (next meeting is at NECN)
    • PPB is moving forward with outreach planning process before DOJ case settlement
    • Community Discovery Committee (CDC): Deyalo Bennette / Aimee Samara
      • A Human Rights Roundtable goals and format draft was handed out (attached).
      • Communications Committee: Christine Rontal
        • A news release for International Women’s Day was handed out for review and will be disseminated to the media on Friday.
        • Jeff Selby asked all commissioners to forward any contacts to him so he can include them in the HRC mailing list.
        • Nominating Committee: Moloy Good
          • The committee needs two more volunteers, which will make the process more balanced and efficient.
          •  The committee will discuss the application process to fill the HRC vacancy.
          • The HRC will discuss the reappointment process at next month’s meeting.
          • Housing Rights Task Force (HRTF): Moloy Good
            • A housing justice rally sponsored by “Connecting Communities of Oregon” coalition will be held in Salem on March 14.
            • There will be a hearing on the exclusionary zoning ban tentatively on March 22.
            • Public Policy Committee: Kyle Busse
              • An HRC News Release was disseminated to media in support of the proposed earned sick leave ordinance.
              • Ashley Horne will attend the City Council hearing, representing the HRC in support of the earned sick leave ordinance.
              • Human Trafficking Task Force (HTTF): Kyle Busse
                • HTTF members have been meeting with elected officials and law enforcement staff to discuss the mapping project for mapping immigrant populations. Multnomah County GIS staff are working on producing the maps.
                • Aimee Samara is growing the domestic side of the HTTF and is asking if anyone knows of a statistician who would be interested in working with HTTF.
                • PPB Assistant Chief Donna Henderson is enthusiastic about creating training videos tat will introduce PPB staff to human trafficking issues.


Public Comment

  • Mary Eng asked if HRC made an authoritative comment on the DOJ issue.
  • Mike Tabor is concerned that issues of people of color were not included in the DOJ investigation report. He is also concerned about the PPB initiative on DOJ case outreach. He does not want PPB to use their initiative as an excuse later in the process by saying, “What’s the need for that? We’re already doing that.”


Additional Issues

  • Deyalo Bennette would like the HRC to adopt a professional development process for commissioners.
  • Allan Lazo mentioned Homeless Bill of Rights training and meeting at Sisters of the Road scheduled for March 9.
  • Damon Isiah Turner attended a racial governing conference in Seattle and the HRC should be aware of the conference being held in Portland in December and should play a role.
  • Food was provided by Aybla Grill and Portland Pedal Power.


Meeting adjourned at 6:40 p.m.