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Alaska State Commission for Human Rights 50th Anniversary


In 1944, Alberta Schenck, a seventeen year-old Alaska Native was arrested and spent a night in jail for daring to sit in the “whites only” section of Nome’s Dream Theater.  Within a year, Elizabeth Peratrovich, a young Alaska Native woman involved in the struggle to end segregation, championed the first civil rights law through the territorial legislature.

Two decades later, in 1963, during the time of the national civil rights movement, the Alaska Legislature passed the State’s first comprehensive Human Rights Law.  The Legislature also established the Alaska State Commission for Human Rights to enforce the law and work to prevent and eliminate discrimination.

The Commission will celebrate its 50th Anniversary on Wednesday, October 23, 2013, at the Princess Riverside Lodge, Jade Room, in Fairbanks, Alaska from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.  John Schmelzer, Attorney Advisor of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, will be the keynote speaker.  The public is invited to attend.

For more information, please call 276-7474, extension 239.  TTY/TDD users may call 907-276-3177 in the Anchorage area or statewide toll free (800) 478-3177.

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