Boards, Commissions & Committees

Human Rights Commission Meeting Minutes - August 18, 2022

The Regular Meeting of the Board of Human Rights Commission of the City of Fargo, North Dakota, was held in the Commission Chambers at City Hall at 12:00 p.m., Thursday, August 18, 2022.

The Human Rights Commissioners present or absent were as follows:

Present: Matuor Alier, Carolyn Becraft, Sarah Boonstoppel, Nancy Boyle, Barry Nelson, Cody Severson, Ahmed Shiil

Absent: Abdiwali Sharif-Abdinasir, Hamida Dakane, Jed Locquiao, Cheryl Schaefle

Item 1. Welcome and Introductions
Chair Severson welcomed Members to the meeting and introductions were made.

Item 2. Approve Order of Agenda
Member Becraft moved the Order of Agenda be approved as presented. Second by Member Shiil. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Item 3. Approve Order of Minutes
Member Alier moved the minutes of the June 16, 2022 Human Rights Commission meeting be approved as presented. Second by Member Shiil. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Item 4. Public Comment
No public comment was provided.

Item 5. Introduction of the new City Commission Liaison
Dr. Hogan introduced Fargo City Commissioner Denise Kolpack who will be serving as the liaison to the Human Rights Commission.

Commissioner Kolpack said she is eager to see what this Commission does and she hopes that the engagement continues to grow. She said she is looking forward to working with the Commission.

Item 6. Update on the Election Board
Member Becraft said that Dr. Hogan, Member Shiil and herself met with officials from the Cass County Election Board to discuss their concerns. She said they were responsive and indicated that there is a need for sensitivity training for all election workers. She said they expressed a desire to reach out to diverse groups to get poll workers.

Member Becraft moved that the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Director in coordination with the Cass County Election Board host a meeting with representatives of the various diverse minority groups to review State of North Dakota voting requirements and to recruit individuals to work at the election polls and the DEI report back to the Human Rights Commission in September. Second by Member Shiil. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Item 7. Announcements
Dr. Hogan said the Race Exhibit is in City Hall until the middle of September and encouraged everyone if they haven’t checked it out to do so.

Member Shiil spoke about a member of the Fargo School Board who is receiving hate mail and voicemails from around the country for a decision that was made at a School Board Meeting. He said he feels that the Community should stand up for any kind of act of hate and the Human Rights Commission supports her.

Member Nelson moved to send a statement of support to Nyamal Dei. Second by Member Boyle. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Member Boonstoppel said she would also like to send her support for the addition of birth control to the City of Fargo employees’ health benefits. She said she feels that access to birth control is access to basic health care and health care is a human right.

In response to a question from Member Severson regarding the process for reporting a possible hate crime, Sergeant Cristie Jacobsen said anytime a person feels that they are a victim of a crime, hate crime or not, her recommendation is to call the
non-emergency or emergency phone number and an officer will come out to discuss the situation which is occurring. She said that will give the Police Department the ability to investigate and document accordingly.

Member Nelson said there is a 20th Birthday Celebration for the North Dakota Human Rights Coalition being held at Drekker Brewing Company tonight from 5:30-7:30 p.m. He welcomed all to join in the celebration.

Item 8. Staff Updates
Jamie Garvey said the Fargo Fire Department is accepting applications for firefighters until September 5th.

Item 9. Adjourn
The time at adjournment was 12:46 p.m.