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  • International Human Rights Day 2014 CELEBRATE International Human Rights Day:   Join the Illinois Department of Human Rights, Tuesday, December 9th from 9:00am to 11:30am, for a FREE screening and facilitated discussion of "Mirrors of Privilege:  Making Whiteness Visible," a film featuring stories of several people seeking to overcome issues of unconscious racism and entitlement in order to bridge the gap between good intentions and meaningful change.
    (December 9, 2014)


  • ICED 2014 Job FairSusan Allen, of the IDHR Springfield office, represented the Department and the Interagency Committee on Employees with Disabilities (ICED) at a Job Fair and Health and Disabilities Fair sponsored by the Illinois Department of Human Services at the Illinois State Fairgrounds on October 29, 2014 in Springfield.  About 80 agencies and vendors were present, and over 150 people with disabilities attended the event. : Ms. Allen provided information about filing a charge of discrimination with the Department and explained procedures for obtaining a state job.
    (October 29, 2014)
  • IDHR Director Rocco Claps IDHR celebrates the 36th Anniversary of Peace Day at Daley Plaza in Chicago.

    Chicago pioneered the celebration of Peace Day and serves as a model for cities throughout the world.  Four years before the United Nations established the International Day of Peace, Chicago designated an official Peace Day on September 7, 1978.  Chicago is the only major city in the world with a 30+ year history of peacebuilding through annual Peace Day events, and is an official United Nations Peace Messenger city.  The Peace School, the founding organization of Peace Day in Chicago, is a U.N. Peace Messenger organization.  IDHR Director Rocco Claps [pictured above], read the Governor’s Proclamation.

    IDHR celebrates Peace Day

    If there is to be peace in the world,
    There must be peace in the nations.
    If there is to be peace in the nations,
    There must be peace in the cities.
    If there is to be peace in the cities,
    There must be peace between neighbors.
    If there is to be peace between neighbors,
    There must be peace in the home.
    If there is to be peace in the home,
    There must be peace in the heart.
    - Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher

    (September 19, 2014)
  • Latino Heritage Month 2014

    MUCHAS GRACIAS to those who joined us at IDHR Latino Heritage Month Event today!  This event filled up to capacity very quickly with participants from IDHR and other agencies.  Director Claps introduced local teaching artist Thelma Uranga, who gave us a presentation about the history of Papel Picado and its modern use in Latino culture.  Attendees were able to create their own designs and take home various templates to help them create more.  Check out the amazing Papel Picado designs. Thanks for your support and hope to see you at our next event.
    (September 18, 2014)
  • IDHR Attorney Carol CeraIDHR Attorney Carol Cera gave a presentation on sexual harassment on August 28, 2014, at the Mexican Consulate in Chicago as part of Labor Rights Week.
    (August 28, 2014)












  • Women's Equality DayAugust 26th is Women's Equality Day, commemorating the day in 1920 when the 19th Amendment became law and women were finally allowed to vote in the United States.
    (August 26, 2014)












  • Access Living and the Center for Multicultural Communities On August 20th IDHR in partnership with Diversity Inc., Access Living and the Center for Multicultural Communities, conducted the second in a series of seven workshops targeted to the 47 entitlement communities in Illinois.  The workshop series, entitled “Furthering Opportunity: How Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing Requirements Affect Your Community and Responsibility under the Fair Housing Act” was attended by local government officials, public housing authorities, housing providers and community groups from the Central Illinois region.  Participants learned about the historical context for Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) legislation, how to foster citizen participation in the planning process, best practices, and how to Affirmatively Further Fair Housing for persons with disabilities.  The workshop was held at Illinois State University’s Bone Student Center in Normal, Illinois.  [Pictured above]  Eugene Dumas, Executive Director of the Center for Multicultural Communities, providing a detailed history on racism throughout the ages.

    Access Living and the Center for Multicultural Communities[Pictured Left]  : Adam Ballard, Advocacy Manager at Access Living, giving recommendations for municipalities on how to Affirmatively Further Fair Housing for persons with disabilities.

    For more information about upcoming dates and locations for the workshop series, please visit IDHR’s Fair Housing for Municipalities webpage.



    Access Living and the Center for Multicultural Communities [Pictured right]   James Wessendorf (Wess) from the Center for Multicultural Communities providing a historical context for the affirmative nature of AFFH requirements through an examination of U.S. government policies that perpetuated discrimination.
    (August 20, 2014)










  • IDHR Executive Staffers Attend IAOHRA Conference and EEOC Training ConferenceOn August 10th and 11th, 2014, Deputy Director Bobbie Wanzo (Midwest Regional Representative), attended the International Association of Official Human Rights Agencies (IAOHRA) conference.   [Pictured Left to Right]  :   Jean Kelleher, President of IAOHRA, Gustavo Velasquez, HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, Bobbie Wanzo, IDHR Deputy Director.  On August 12th – 14th, 2014, Director Rocco Claps, Deputy Director Bobbie Wanzo, Chief Legal Counsel Lon Meltesen and Charge Processing Manager Brent Harzman, attended the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) training conference.   Both conferences were held at the same venue.   The theme for this year’s IAOHRA conference was “50 Years of the Civil Rights Act of 1964: The Unfinished Agenda”.  

    IDHR executive staffers attend IAOHRA conference and EEOC training conference[Pictured Left to Right]  : Rocco Claps, IDHR Director, Bobbie Wanzo, IDHR Deputy Director, John Rowe, Director (EEOC Chicago District Office).

    The theme for this year’s IAOHRA conference was “50 Years of the Civil Rights Act of 1964:   The Unfinished Agenda”.   This year’s Fair Employment Practice Agencies (FEPA) National Training Conference focused on the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which created the EEOC.

    This year’s Fair Employment Practice Agencies (FEPA) National Training Conference focused on the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which created the EEOC.   Attendance at these conferences was particularly important because of information presented which impact the operations of the Department and the State of Illinois.
    (August 2014)

  • 1964 Civil Rights Act CelebrationToday, July 2, 2014, the 50th anniversary of the signing of The Civil Rights Act of 1964, Director Rocco Claps opened the Freedom Riders exhibit which will be available for viewing on the atrium level of the JRTC.

    The program also included Thomas Madison Armstrong who was a Freedom Rider in the ‘60s.

    Attending the ceremony:  Pictured  (from L to R)    Bill Foster - Congressman (IL-11) Thomas Armstrong - Freedom Rider, Lisa Madigan - Attorney General, Jesse White - Secretary of State, and Rocco Claps - IDHR Director.  View more photos from this event.
    (July 2, 2014)

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