Thursday, May 15, 2003

Five to fill expanded rights panel


More groups represented on Covington board

By Cindy Schroeder
The Cincinnati Enquirer

COVINGTON - The Covington Human Rights Commission, just two weeks after a victory on its gay rights expansion of the city's non-discrimination clause, has nearly doubled its members.

Tuesday night, the City Commission added a Hispanic representative, a second African-American, representatives of the mentally and physically disabled communities, and a female attorney who represented the business viewpoint in meetings to discuss the expansion of Covington's human rights law.

The city's new human rights law approved April 29 called for expanding Covington's human rights commission from five to nine members, protected more groups from discrimination, and added penalties. The newly expanded commission will hold its first meeting on June 3 at the city building.

"This rounds out our board and makes it very representative of the community,'' said City Commissioner Craig Bohman. "No matter what issue comes before the board, everyone in the community should feel there's someone on the board who represents them."

New Human Rights Commission members are Hensley Jemmott, first vice president of the Northern Kentucky chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and a former member of the Covington Board of Education; Marie Braun, a leader of the Disabilities Coalition of Northern Kentucky Inc.; Jimmy Williams, a long-time Covington resident who never let a slight mental disability get in the way of his political activism; Gil Esparza, founder and director of the Hispanic Resource Center in Covington, and Julie Hackworth, a lawyer with Ashland Oil.

Mr. Jemmott replaces Rollins Davis, the executive director of the Northern Kentucky Community Center, who recently left the board.

"I think they'll all be a great addition," said the Rev. Don Smith, chairman of the human rights commission and pastor of Community of Faith Presbyterian Church. "The city commission approved all of the Human Rights Commission's recommendations" for new members.

"We have good representation from groups who, in the past, felt they had been discriminated against."

Other current board members include Charles King, Sandy Kerlin and Pamela Mullins.

Covington's new human rights law adopted last month replaced the one adopted in 1998 with a more comprehensive one that protects people from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations because of disability, age, sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sexual orientation and gender identity.

E-mail cschroeder@enquirer.com




TOP STORIES
Moon takes spin in our shadow
High-tech detectors spot high waters
'Battered wife' charged in shooting
Quiet suburb jolted by neighbor's gun death
Two apartment buildings damaged in Elmwood fire

IN THE TRISTATE
Doll is flat-out amazing teacher
New roads connect ballpark, river, downtown
Northside unsafe, activist says
Beggars won't need to register
Few Heberle pupils test high for lead
Convict guilty of riot murder
Medical service abuse study proposed
Calling top high school seniors
Tristate A.M. Report

ENQUIRER COLUMNISTS
PULFER: New money
HOWARD: Some Good News

BUTLER, WARREN, CLERMONT
Builder removes pellets on curbs
Beer OK'd at VOA park festival, but bingo tent denied
2 courts dispute computer report
Clermont to cancel wastewater contract
Evendale blight fight rekindles
Middletown schools offer a choice of building plans
Petition effort called legal
Union Centre Blvd. needs fixing
Legal career over for former municipal judge
Shooting victim had been stalked
Springer to speak at Democratic fund-raiser

OHIO
Taft: Hone reading program
Mother of abandoned baby sought
Bond revoked for women in case of boys kept in closet
Guards' union delays closing of prison in Lima
$14M lottery jackpot slips away unclaimed
Ohio Moments

KENTUCKY
Five to fill expanded rights panel
Man who led stolen-car chase indicted
Third man claims jail beating; his case won't be prosecuted
Poll has Chandler, Fletcher leading
Ky.-based soldier killed in Iraq
Miner buried alive gets out
Attorney general candidates hurl personal attacks
Suspect in dorm death accused of earlier assault
Kentucky obituaries