Institution Spotlight: Fairfax County Office of Human Rights and Equity Programs (OHREP)
This week CLPA highlights the Fairfax County Office of Human Rights and Equity Programs (OHREP). OHREP receives and investigates complaints alleging violations of the Fairfax County Human Rights Ordinance. They are also responsible for managing the County’s Fair Housing Plan, administering the County’s Equal Employment Enforcement (EEO) program, and ensuring the County’s compliance with all federal, state, and county civil rights laws.
The Human Rights Division of OHREP receives and investigates complaints filed by anyone who believes they have been discriminated against in Fairfax County. The areas covered by the Human Rights Division include employment, housing, private education, public accommodations, and credit. Discrimination claims can be filed based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions including lactation, age, disability, status as a veteran, or national origin.
OHREP is responsible for assisting two commissions. The Fairfax County Human Rights Commission and the Fairfax County Student Human Rights Commission.
Human Rights Commission is charged with receiving and investigating complaints alleging a violation of the Human Rights Ordinance. It was created by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and has 12 Commissioners representing each of the Supervisor's District. Each Commissioner serves a three-year term.
The current Commission consists of:
Gloria J. Crawford, Chair
Shahid S. Malik, Vice Chair
Elliot B. Bell-Krasner, Secretary
Freda Bailey Shipman, Commissioner
Meena Bhinge, Commissioner
Bryan W. Hudson, Commissioner
Harry R. Salinas, Commissioner
Manny Solon, Commissioner
Eduardo Conde, Commissioner
Josh Shumaker, Commissioner
Abigail Hochberg Shannon, Commissioner
The Student Human Rights Commission is the region's first commission comprised entirely of high school students. During the 2009 - 2010 school year OHREP working with Fairfax County Public Schools launched the Commission program. The mission of the commission is to:
Promote dialogue on diversity among youth;
Foster a greater understanding and appreciation of differences;
Create exposure to human and civil rights laws, such as the Fairfax County Human Rights Ordinance and Fair Housing Act; and
Encourage leadership and active participation in government.
If you want to learn more about OHREP, Human Rights Commission, or Student Human Rights Commission contact OHREP’s office at (703) 324-2953.