FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, December 3, 2013
CONTACT: Elliot Imse, Director of Policy & Communications (OHR): 202.481.3773, [email protected]
The DC Commission on Human Rights, with Mayor Vincent C. Gray, will recognize the work of Sonia Gutierrez and local high school students at the DC Commission on Human Rights Awards Ceremony on Thursday, December 11. Ms. Gutierrez, founder and president emeritus of Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School, is being honored for her lifetime of work on behalf of immigrant communities in the District. Local high school students selected as finalists for the Youth Human Rights Ambassador Contest will also be honored for their projects related to human rights in the District.
BACKGROUND: The Cornelius R. “Neil” Alexander Humanitarian Award celebrates the work and accomplishments of individuals who have made significant contributions in the field of civil rights and human rights in the District. Neil Alexander was the Chief Hearing Examiner for the DC Commission on Human Rights from 1987 until his passing in 2007. Neil was widely recognized as an expert in discrimination law and a leader in the fight for social justice.
The Youth Human Rights Ambassador Contest encourages DC students to develop creative pieces that demonstrate their understanding of the DC Human Rights Act. Approximately 138 submissions were received this year and 15 finalists chosen at the DC Teens Take on the Human Rights Act event on November 19 at Georgetown University Law Center. Three submissions will be chosen as winners at the Commission on Human Rights Awards Ceremony.
The event is open to the public, but we request attendees RSVP by Thursday, December 4 at http://commissionawards2014.eventbrite.com or by calling (202) 727-0656.
About the District of Columbia Commission on Human Rights
The Commission on Human Rights is a quasi-independent body whose primary function is to adjudicate private sector discrimination complaints brought under the DC Human Rights Act. It is comprised of 15 volunteer Commissioners appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council. Three administrative law judges assist the Commission in upholding its responsibilities.
About the District of Columbia Office of Human Rights
The District of Columbia Office of Human Rights (OHR) was established to eradicate discrimination, increase equal opportunity and protect human rights for persons who live in or visit the District of Columbia. The agency enforces local and federal human rights laws, including the DC Human Rights Act, by providing a legal process to those who believe they have been discriminated against. OHR also proactively enforces human rights in the District through Director’s Inquiries, which allow it to identify and investigate practices and policies that may be discriminatory.