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NCJ Number: 98016 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Critical Report 85-1 - Case Investigation Backlog at Iowa Civil Rights Commission
Author(s): W P Angrick
Corporate Author: Iowa Office of the Citizens' Aide
United States of America
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 43
Sponsoring Agency: Iowa Office of the Citizens' Aide
Des Moines, IA 50319
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper examines the Iowa Civil Rights Commission's (ICRC) problem of complaint investigation delays and considers three discrimination complaints that were each assigned to three different investigators and were in 'backlog' status for at least 2 years.
Abstract: The first case alleged employment discrimination on the basis of physical disability; the second, discrimination or unfair practices by a public school district on the basis of national origin. The third case alleged harassment of a black customer by a white tavern owner. None of these cases was ever adequately investigated. The ICRC attributes the delays to its 'lack of staff,' but this is not a sufficient explanation. Rather, the delay problem is attributable to the operation of the ICRC itself; as of March 7, 1985, approximately 285 cases were in backlog status, awaiting assignment for investigation. These delays adversely affect complainants by reducing the likelihood that adequate investigations can be conducted; they are also unfair to those who have had complaints filed against them. For example, these individuals may have to retain legal counsel for the duration of the process. The ICRC staff is not consistently providing citizens with the quality of service to which they are legally entitled. Immediate steps should be taken to maximize the effectiveness of the investigatory process. The number of different individuals handling files during their preparatory stage must be reduced, and supervisory personnel must be responsible for knowing the status of all cases assigned to their section. Appendixes include descriptions of the ICRC complaint process and personnel responsibilities.
Index Term(s): Alternative dispute settlement; Civil rights; Discrimination; Iowa
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