November 1, 1997
The Honorable Terry E. Branstad
Governor of the State of Iowa
The State Capitol
Des Moines, IA 50319
Dear Governor Branstad:
On behalf of staff, commissioners, and all of our volunteers, I am very proud to present to you and to the General Assembly the Annual Report of the Iowa Civil Rights Commission for fiscal year 1997.
As you know, our mission is to eliminate discrimination in Iowa. This past year we have made significant progress in eliminating the backlog and in expanding and improving our public education program.
Five years ago, we had more than 600 cases waiting to be assigned to investigators. Today we have fewer than a dozen.
Five years ago our entire public education program consisted of doing 100 workshops per year, mostly for housing providers. Today we do more than 200 workshops per year for employers, schools, lender, landlords, and real estate agents. We have a "video for loan" library with more than sixty titles on anti-discrimination law and valuing diversity.
We have helped 16 Iowa communities form diversity appreciation teams to fight discrimination locally and we've helped six communities form sponsoring coalitions to coordinate and conduct community-wide study circles (small discussion groups) on racism and race relations. We have also developed an extensive and very customer-friendly web site, offering lots of valuable information about the Commission and about the work we do.
We are very proud of the work we've done and we thank you very much for your support.