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Commission on Human Rights Board

The Commission on Human Rights Board (“CHR Board”) is a quasi-judicial, as well as an advisory board, charged with the enforcement of Miami-Dade County's Human Rights Ordinance, Chapter 11A of the Miami-Dade County Code as amended.  The Human Rights Ordinance makes it unlawful to discriminate against any person in Miami-Dade County in employment; housing; public accommodations; and credit and financing practices on the basis of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, pregnancy, age, disability, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, source of income, gender identity or expression, and/or status as a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking, and/or source of income.

The CHR Board also enforces the Miami-Dade County Family Leave Ordinance (Article V of Chapter 11A of the Miami-Dade County Code) and the Domestic Violence Leave Ordinance (Article VIII of Chapter 11A of the Miami-Dade County Code).  The CHR Board’s mission is to reduce discrimination in Miami-Dade County and promote equal treatment for all persons in employment, housing, public accommodations, and credit and financing.

Board History

The CHR Board, which is comprised of 26 members appointed by the Miami-Dade County Board of County Commissioners (BCC), was originally established as the Fair Housing Commission by Ordinance 69-25, which passed on June 18, 1969 and was later renamed the Fair Housing and Employment Appeals Board. Subsequent amendments added more protections against discrimination for residents of Miami-Dade County, and defined case processing and enforcement authority.  In April 1990, the Fair Housing and Employment Appeals Board was reestablished as the Equal Opportunity Board.  In June of 2009, the Equal Opportunity Board was reestablished as the current CHR Board.

Board Membership

CHR Board Members are appointed by the BCC to serve in a voluntary capacity assisting in addressing issues of discrimination countywide.  The CHR Board consists of twenty-six (26) members who serve a term of eight (8) consecutive years or as long as their appointing commissioner holds office.  All CHR Board Members must reside within Miami-Dade County.

Duties and Responsibilities

The main duties and responsibilities of the CHR Board are to:

  • Hear and decide appeals of the CHR Director’s final determination. Appeals are heard in front of a panel of at least (3) CHR Board Members.
    Learn more about hearings:
  • Issue final orders reviewing and upholding, modifying, or reversing the CHR director’s determination.
  • Subpoena witnesses or the production of evidence.
  • Provide advice to the BCC and the County Mayor related to civil rights issues impacting the local community.
  • Provide an annual report to the BCC regarding the County’s compliance with fair housing laws.

Current Board Members

  • Rob Collins, Esq., Chairperson
  • Judith Freedberg, Esq., 1st Vice Chairperson
  • Aimee Ferrer, Esq., 2nd Vice Chairperson
  • Rene Gonzalez-Llorens, Esq.
  • Stephen Simeonidis, Esq. 
  • Doug Muir, Esq.
  • Marta Navarro
  • Yvonne Welcker-Sepulveda
  • Carolina F. Naveiras
  • Carmen J. Gimenez
  • Merline Barton
  • Marisol Zenteno
  • Thomas Snook

 

Business Meetings

The CHR Board meets once a month to discuss general business and hear and dispose of pending final orders related to cases on appeal. The CHR Board requires a quorum consisting of five (5) members in order to conduct business.

Attendance

As a condition of membership, it is expected that each CHR Board Member will attend every scheduled and duly noticed business meeting.

Any CHR Board Member that misses two (2) consecutive meetings or three (3) meetings over the course of the calendar year without providing written notice and justification to the CHR staff, will be subject to automatic removal from the board.

Human Rights and Fair Employment Practices
Erin A. New
Division Director

Stephen P. Clark Center
111 NW 1st Street, Miami, FL 33128
305-375-2784305-375-2784

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