Human rights forum yields low turnout, few answers

Although there was plenty of discussion generated by the questions posed during the Human Rights Commission’s community forum Tuesday night, there were few actual answers for the commission’s quest to discover its purpose.

A number of community leaders were in attendance — including Nancy Lewis, director of the Kingdom of Callaway Chamber of Commerce; Callaway Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Casey Clevenger; Bob Hansen, executive director of Westminster College’s Emerson Center for Leadership and Service; Brad Sheppard, director of Our House and Matt Kuhl, director of the Fulton Housing Authority — but there were no Fulton residents there to give input.

Fulton Mayor LeRoy Benton started off the forum by explaining the commission’s reasons for hosting the event.

“The city’s Human Rights Commission has struggled with identifying its role in the community,” Benton said. “In 2000, we identified education of human rights as the commission’s role, however there is lots of good work already being done, and we don’t wish to replicate programs we already have.

“We want to see if we can identify issues the commission can address.”

“We welcome input from those already involved in these kinds of efforts, and from members of the community,” commission president Cathi Harris agreed.

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