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Charleston City Council advances racial conciliation commission

Black Lives Matter Protest, Montreal

Photo: Getty Images

Charleston City Council advances racial conciliation commission

By Live 5's Rey Llerena + Patrick Phillips - News

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Charleston City Council voted to move forward with the city’s Human Affairs and Racial Conciliation Commission during Tuesday night’s meeting but will decide later whether to make the commission permanent.

Most of the conversation at the nearly-six-hour meeting centered on the fate of the commission. After close to an hour and a half of discussion, council members decided voted 8-4 to pass it on its second reading.

“It does not pass any ordinance or against what you believe,” City of Charleston Council Member Jason Sakran said about the commission. “We’re not here to pass ordinances on most recommendations. We’re here to simply create a permanent commission.”

However, some commissioners said they would prefer the commission be deferred, so the public can be more informed.

“I believe we should at least defer this and make sure the public is fully aware of the name change and what this is going to do,” City of Charleston Council Member Caroline Parker said.

Ahead of the discussion, Charleston locals shared why they were either for the commission or opposed it.

“The least we can do for the citizens whose ancestors laid every brick in every street and every cinderblock in this city, that they should be included in the decisions that affect where and how they live,” one resident said.
“A strong mandate should have a clear definition of what the main purpose is, which is equity,” another said. “If you want to get after it, define equity in a way that makes sense for you to be able to bring back to your constituents.”

Council members said they will revisit the commission’s future in two weeks when it comes up for a third reading at the next council meeting.

Here's the entire meeting on demand from YouTube:


"Charleston City Councilman Ross Appel puts his whole foot on his mouth when a Native American questions his assertion that African Americans are the most oppressed group in Americas history. This is gold and you can’t make this stuff up!" - JT Bessinger via Facebook

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