Powers of the Human Rights Commission
Under the City Code, Chapter 38, Article II, Division 2, the Human Rights Commission is granted many powers and authorities. Those include the ability to:
- Adopt rules of procedure consistent with Missouri Revised Statutes chapters 213 and 536 and this chapter.
- Prepare an annual report to be presented to the mayor and council concerning the conditions of minority groups in the city, with special reference to discrimination, civil rights, human relations, hate group activity, bias crimes and bias practices and attitudes among institutions and individuals in the community. The report may also include other social and economic factors that influence conditions of minority groups, as well as the causes of these conditions and the effects and implications to minority groups and the entire city. In preparation for the report the commission may conduct hearings and conduct whatever other research is necessary. The report shall include appropriate recommendations to the mayor and the council.
- Form task forces including: youth, business, media, education, law enforcement, religion, labor, gay and lesbian issues, metropolitan area cooperation, and others as may be deemed appropriate.
- Investigate hate group activity and incidents of bias crimes and work with law enforcement agencies and others to implement programs and activities to combat hate group activity and bias crimes.
- Seek information from any and all persons, agencies and businesses to identify and investigate problems of discrimination and bias as they affect the citizens of the city either directly or indirectly.
- Cooperate with public and private educational institutions to foster better human relations among the citizens of the city and within the metropolitan Kansas City area.
- Work with civil rights organizations, community organizations, law enforcement agencies, school districts and others to collect and review data relating to patterns of discrimination, bias crimes, hate group activity, and general issues of civil and human rights.
- Conduct studies, assemble pertinent data, implement educational programs and organize raining materials for use by the commission to assist civil and human rights agencies, organizations, educational institutions, law enforcement agencies, labor unions and businesses and others to prevent discrimination.
- Serve as an advocate to prevent discrimination and bias crimes.
- Hold hearings regarding issues of general or specific civil and human rights affecting the citizens of the city, to review decisions of hearing examiners appointed by the city to hear charges of violations of RSMo ch. 213, and perform other actions as allowed under the Missouri Human Rights Statute, RSMo. ch. 213.
- Study, advise and make other recommendations for legislation, policies, procedures and practices of the city, other businesses entities, and other public entities as are consistent with the purposes of this chapter.