Commission on Human Rights
Announcing the Mercer County Commission on Human Rights
The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights proudly welcomes a new Kentucky local commission partner, the Mercer County Commission on Human Rights, serving Harrodsburg, Burgin, and Mercer County.
Glenda Green, a Kentucky Commission on Human Rights representative, asked the county to establish the local commission. She worked with officials through its formation and commissioner training. Green said an ordinance officially establishing the commission‘s function is under consideration by the county.
Mark Thompson has been named as chair, Tiffany Yeast as vice chair, and Pamela Hoots is secretary.
“We are delighted to have this important new partner to support our state commission’s mission to reach out to all regions of Kentucky in order to promote equal opportunity and enforce the laws that prohibit discrimination,” said John J. Johnson, executive director of the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights.
The Mercer County commission will provide civil rights education and public awareness initiatives for its constituent community and will assist the state human rights commission by passing along referrals consisting of people who believe they may be victims of discrimination. The state commission will communicate with those individuals to conduct an intake process, which helps determine jurisdiction and if requirements exist for a claim of illegal discrimination. The state commission will file discrimination complaints based upon the intakes, and then investigate to determine whether discrimination has occurred. If the commission determines that illegal discrimination has occurred, the perpetrator will be ordered to cease and desist, undergo training and compliance monitoring, and the victim may be awarded a monetary amount for damages. Also, the commission works to mediate, or reach settlements and conciliations if both parties agree to proceed in these manners rather than pursue litigation.
The mission of the Mercer County Human Rights Commission is to "inform, educate, and assist in resolving inquiries of discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations, as they relate to protected classes of: race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, and familial status.”
The Mercer County commission will meet at 208 S. Main Street on Thursdays over the next few weeks, and after that will meet every quarter or on an as-needed basis. Contact Chair Mark Thompson for information and times. Office hours for the commission are Mondays 9 am to 12 pm. Members of the public may contact the local commission and Chair Thompson at 859-734-2383 Ext 102. Or, email the commission at email@example.com. People may U.S. mail the commission at Mercer County Human Rights Commission, P.O. Box 468, Harrodsburg, Ky., 40330.
Kentucky now has 23 local human rights commissions, all of which partner with the state commission to help educate and aid in the enforcement of civil rights laws. Some local commissions directly enforce their county or city ordinances that prohibit discrimination.
The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights is the state government agency that enforces the Kentucky Civil Rights Act and federal civil rights laws. Civil Rights laws protect people from discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, age, family status, and tobacco smoking status. These protected classes apply with varying stipulations to the protected areas of employment, public accommodations, housing and financial transactions.
People who have concerns about illegal discrimination may directly contact the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights at 1-800-292-5566. Visit the state commission website at www.kchr.ky.gov. The Kentucky Commission on Human Rights shares news media civil rights related news on its own website and on Facebook and Twitter. After logging onto Facebook or Twitter, type Kentucky Human Rights into the search browser to locate the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights Facebook or Twitter pages.