ICRC, City of Hammond form partnership

INDIANAPOLIS - The State of Indiana Civil Rights Commission (ICRC) and the City of Hammond Human Relations Commission (HHRC)today a new partnership aimed at enhancing service for Hoosiers throughout the state.

The newly formalized agreement involves strategic collaborations that will enable the local agency to work more closely with the state’s commission to resolve discrimination claims and provide education and outreach in the City of Hammond and Lake County.

Jamal L. Smith, Executive Director of the ICRC, applauded the partnership as an opportunity to support a local human rights agency whose charge is to eradicate discrimination in the City of Hammond. A charge the ICRC has statewide.

“I have been so impressed with the work done by the City of Hammond, the way they know their community, and the passion their new director brings to this often difficult charge,” said Smith. “We’ve ironed out a partnership that makes the most of available resources and improves our collective ability to efficiently and effectively protect the civil rights of individuals in the City of Hammond and surrounding areas.”

This marks a significant step in ensuring Hammond residents receive timely resolution to their claims of discrimination and is similar to other such agreements being formalized by the ICRC throughout Indiana. Among stipulations as part of the partnership, the ICRC and HHRC will seek:

To work cooperatively to promote equality, civil rights and education in Hammond and Lake County.

To explore joint opportunities which both ICRC and HHRC can publicly discuss common goals, important issues, and topics relative to the work of both entities.

Indiana Code 22-9-1-12.1(b) authorizes any city, town, or county to adopt an ordinance which may include the establishment of a local human rights commission. Currently there are more than 20 local human rights commissions in the State of Indiana.

The Indiana Civil Rights Commission enforces the Indiana civil rights laws and provides education and services to the public in an effort to ensure equal opportunity for all Hoosiers and visitors to the State of Indiana. For more information, contact Brad Meadows, Deputy Director – External Affairs, at (317) 232-2651.