Commission will kick off MLK Celebration month on Saturday at City Hall
Published : Wednesday, January 3, 2018 | 5:56 AM
[Editor's Note: This story incorrectly labelled the city commission as the Human Rights Commission and it is, in fact, the Human Relations Commission.]
With a goal of achieving “a clear understanding of the pressing issues that constituents in our community care about,” the Pasadena Human Relations Commission leadership is currently scheduling a community survey on local needs and issues.
“This will enable us to better plan ways to address these items,” said Commission Chair Justin Jones on Tuesday.
“As commissioners,” Jones continued, “we are dedicated to bringing a unified city to the forefront, and so with this survey, we’ll be able to begin to see what specific role the commission can play in creating a sustainable pathway to address issues identified by the community.”
According to Jones, part of the commission’s goal is develop a strategic plan every year, “and as such, I think this data and analysis that we can gather from this survey could be used as a tool to maybe hopefully help us form our approach to drafting our strategic plan, and it’ll be able to inform us and guide us in our current strategic plans. That’s the initial thought process behind it.”
Jones also stressed the importance of the commission’s existence, saying that the commission wants to “engage in different activities to fight against prejudice, racism … intolerance and discrimination, to be a better city.”
“I want folks to continue to get involved,” added Jones, “and get engaged in our city.”
The survey is in the initial planning stages, said Jones.
Over the last year, the commission has scheduled forums on various local issues including the educational systems within the city of Pasadena.
The commission has also discussed civic engagement in the city and held open forums in different areas in the city of Pasadena, said Jones. In addition, the commission holds a yearly essay contest in which students are asked to describe “what human relations means to them and how to better improve human relations in our city,” explained Jones.
The essay contest has been invaluable in providing scholarships as part of an ongoing effort, he said.
Working with the MLK Community Coalition, the commission will also host the kick off event to Black History Month and the celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King’s with the 18th Annual “Rekindling the Light of Peace” program to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Congresswoman Judy Chu will serve as the keynote speaker for the program which will include other speakers, poetry and music. The program will take place on January 6 in the City Council Chambers located on the second floor of Pasadena City Hall.
“Pasadena is a diverse community,” commented Jones, “and so when we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life, we really see the diversity and the benefits that people receive from his life’s work.”
The Pasadena Human Relations Commission meets on the first Tuesday of every month at the Jackie Robinson Community Center, 1020 North Fair Oaks Avenue, Pasadena 91103.