CHICAGO – For the fifth year in a row, the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) is joining with the Consulate of Mexico in Chicago to celebrate the annual Labor Rights Week with a series of events designed to educate the public about their right to be free from discrimination in the workplace. Workshops and activities will be held in various locations to educate the community about the labor rights in Illinois that are enshrined in the Illinois Human Rights Act.
“Illinois has a very vigorous Human Rights Act,” said IDHR Director Rocco Claps. “And we also have a Governor, Governor Quinn, who believes strongly in workers’ rights. If you believe that you are the victim of discrimination in the workplace, there is a place you can turn for an impartial investigation to determine if your rights were violated. But many people are not aware of their protection under the Act. This is why we think it is important that every year we take the opportunity to work with the Consulate of Mexico to publicize our mission.”
At a news conference to kick-off the effort, U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis was represented by the Labor Department’s Regional Representative, Kenneth Williams-Bennett. The Labor Department and the Embassy of Mexico in Washington, DC, have agreed to make the theme of this year’s effort: “Promoting Labor Rights is Everyone’s Responsibility.”
Officials from IDHR, Illinois Department of Labor and other agencies will present information sessions during the week of Aug. 27-31.
Officials will educate the public about what the law says about discrimination in the workplace and other worker rights, such as the minimum wage law. Each day there will be presentations conducted at the Consulate of Mexico in Chicago. Events are also planned for Centro Romero in Rogers Park, Casa Jalisco/Durango in Melrose Park, City Hall in Waukegan and in the City of Elgin.
In addition, events will be held at the following schools: Little Village Academy, Arnold Mireles Academy in South Chicago, Rosario Castellanos Elementary School and Delgado Kanoon Magnet School in Little Village and Orozco Elementary Academy in Pilsen.
Last year, IDHR received almost 3,500 employment discrimination cases, and more than 450 complaints alleging discrimination based on national origin. IDHR has bilingual staff and informational materials.
For more information please go to: http://www2.illinois.gov/dhr/Pages/default.aspx