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KC-MO Operations Committee Considers Affirmative Action Plan

By Sylvia Maria Gross

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/kcur/local-kcur-583483.mp3

Kansas City, MO – In a final meeting of Kansas City's Operations Committee today, council members recommended passing affirmative action goals for all city construction projects. The ordinance would require all contractors to have an overall workforce comprised of 10 percent minorities and 2 percent women. KCUR's Sylvia Maria Gross has more.

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NARR: Currently, workforce diversity requirements are written into individual contracts for projects. The new ordinance would standardize affirmative action requirements for all contractors working with the city. It was developed by a coalition of unions, contractors, community leaders and clergy who have been meeting for more than two years. AFL-CIO President Bridget Williams said it was an important start.

WILLIAMS: We have all made the commitment that we will monitor this in a year, come back if the goals are too low, we will adjust them to their appropriate levels.

Former council member Carol Coe said in testimony that the city's lawyers didn't approved the legality of the draft, and it could be open to lawsuits.

COE: We are debating an ordinance that hasn't gone through good housekeeping.

Other critics of the ordinance said council members bypassed a more stringent policy developed by the city's Human Relations Department. A revised version of the workforce ordinance will go up before the new city council next week.

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