Soon-to-be-formed Human Relations Commission needs wider representation
by Ashlee De Wit
LANSING, Ill. (March 2018) – Ten Lansing residents have submitted applications for the Human Relations Commission so far, but Director of Communications Ken Reynolds would like to see many more completed before the interview process begins.
The application was released to the public at a Village Board meeting on February 6 and currently has no deadline. It is available both on the Village website and in hard-copy form at the Lansing Municipal Center, located at 3141 Ridge Road.
Determining the goals
The Commission itself has not yet been officially formed. On February 15, the Village conducted its second of two workshop-style meetings with select Lansing residents, in order to discuss goals and plans for the Human Relations Commission. Village staff will be taking the information gathered in those meetings and using it to draft an ordinance that will define the Commission.
“The workshops were very valuable in giving us material and perspective that we would not have had without them,” Reynolds said.
Due to the sensitive nature of the topics discussed at the meetings, both the details of the discussion and the names of the meeting’s participants are protected by a confidentiality agreement; Reynolds did not comment on them.
Appointment and approval
The proposed ordinance for the Human Relations Commission will go before the Trustees at a Village Board meeting for discussion—and, eventually, a vote—before the Commission can be officially created. Members of the Human Relations Commission will be appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Trustees.
The first round of interviews for Commission members will likely begin before the Commission is approved, Reynolds said, so that the Mayor and Village staff aren’t starting the selection process from scratch after the ordinance is passed.
Process and progress
He notes that the approval process may take some time.
“Given what [the Human Relations Commission] is, and given the amount of time that has gone into it, I think it’s important that the Board—and I know they will—review it thoroughly and ask questions. If we have to make adjustments from there, that’s part of the process,” Reynolds said.