The City Council Wednesday approved a civil and human rights ordinance prohibiting discrimination and other forms of bigotry in Los Angeles.
The ordinance was approved on a 12-0 vote, along with a second measure to create a commission to investigate violations of residents’ civil rights, with the power to levy fines of up to $125,000 per standard violation and cumulative penalties of up to $250,000 per violation as a result of violent or harassing acts.
The commission would have 15 members, with one member appointed by each of the 15 City Council members and approved by the full council.
Peter Schey, a civil rights attorney and the city’s legal adviser on immigration issues, urged passage of the ordinances, which need to be signed by Mayor Eric Garcetti to become official.
“I think it’s going to be a model human rights and civil rights provision that other cities may later adopt, and I think it will provide protection to a large number of people, particularly vulnerable, low-income people who presently for one reason or another fear the federal government’s unfamiliarity with the state’s procedures on having the discrimination that they’ve experienced addressed,” Schey told the council’s Immigrant Affairs, Civil Rights and Equity Committee in February.
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