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The problems within the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights in Minneapolis have been brought to light on this blog in simple clarity since 2008. In 2007 the prestigious Roy Wilkins Center for Human Relations and Social Justice at the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs on the University of Minnesota campus did an in-depth evaluation of the department authored by Dr. Samuel L. Myers, Jr (Director) ; Judge LaJune Thomas Lange and Lawrencina Mason Oramalu, JD citing that, “The City’s diverse community deserves to have a government committed to fulfilling the social and economic goals of the Civil Rights Ordinance and the intent of the Civil Rights Ordinance through effective implementation and evaluation, thus ensuring that the civil rights policy has the impact it was designed to produce.” In short, the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights has never hit the “reset” button, or its possible they don’t know how. (Read the report here: Evaluation of the City of Minneapolis Civil Rights Department May 2007); also read Minneapolis Disparity Report 2010)
By Donald W.R. Allen, II – Editor in Chief/IBNN NEWS and Black Politics in Minneapolis
Minneapolis, MN (IBNN NEWS/June 19, 2011)…On Friday, June 17, 2011 the Minneapolis City Council approved a whopping $90,000 settlement for the former Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights Investigative Unit Manager Ronald G. Brandon. This was an employment-related claim filed administratively in state court on behalf of Mr. Brandon.
Ronald G. Brandon was a “by-the-book” city employee who brought forward questions about the shredding of case files to delete the faulty department’s back-log. (Read “Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights case backlog eliminated — by shredding” and “SHRED-GATE 2011: Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights, City Council need to explain SHRED-GATE” ). Mr. Brandon was quickly moved from the Civil Rights Department in March of 2010 and transferred to another city department where he had less seniority and then finally released from his city position.
Velma Korbel, Director of Minneapolis’ Civil Rights department took a hand in playing a corporate game of chess with Mr. Brandon’s career. There is more controversy brewing in the department on the Contract Compliance side. Sources tell IBNN NEWS that Johnny Burns, Compliance Manager has been keeping a low-profile since the Star Tribune reported on a list of contractors where 22 on the list did not have licenses to work in the City of Minneapolis. Mr. Burns has told IBNN NEWS personally, “The list didn’t come from the Civil Rights Department.” (Read the Star Tribune story, “City gives bad repair advise.”)
Minneapolis City Councilman Cameron Gordon-Ward 2 and Councilwoman Elizabeth Glidden-Ward 8 have never privately or publically answered several requests to investigate the shredding of civil rights investigative cases in the under-staffed, ill-managed and poorly ran department nor have any of the City’s top elected officials including our blusterous mayor R. T. Rybak have really started to take a look and an important city department that needs to operate on behalf of people who have not. But then again, by Rybak’s oversight of the department – it’s clear the phrase “White here, White now” is the flavor of the day in the DFL political plantation.
IBNN NEWS and its affiliates agree with the award, although the amount should have been triple for the heinous mind-game the Civil Rights Department and the City of Minneapolis played on Mr. Brandon.
There’s more to come….