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Human Rights Commission discusses Charlottesville, hears complaints from public housing tenants

Brad Williams

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The events that took place in Charlottesville, Va., have sparked discussions in La Crosse.

The city’s Human Rights Commission met Wed. night to discuss ways to address those types of situations.

“I think this is something that, as national events warrant,” Commission chair Fabio Burgos explains, “that we may put on the agenda and have notice so that people can share ideas with us and maybe share their ideas about how the city of La Crosse can avoid situations such as occurred in Charlottesville in the future.”

During the meeting Burgos argued that a ‘misreading of American history’ attracted alt-right demonstrators to Charlottesville.

Others at the meeting suggested that the city look into how history is being taught in local schools and whether Confederate flags are being displayed in public places.

Also brought up at the meeting were people living in La Crosse public housing, who claim the city housing authority does not readily respond to complaints from tenants and may discriminate against some prospective renters.

The commission had not posted notice of a public hearing on housing matters but its members did agree to let visitors speak.

Among the complaints made about the housing authority were charges that tenants were being unfairly evicted or charged for damages that were not their fault.

They also accused Authority director Jane Alberts of being inaccessible and of not returning their phone calls.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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