Human Rights Ordinance Complaint Process

If you believe you have been discriminated against you may file a discrimination complaint with the City’s Community Relations Office.  You must file a charge of discrimination within 180 days of the alleged discriminatory act.  The Community Relations Office will investigate the charge after it has been filed and conclude it within the 180 day limit.  There is no fee for filing a complaint.  Please review our brochure for more information on what to do if you think you have been discriminated against.

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Filing a Complaint

To start the complaint process, download one of the complaint forms below or pick one up from the Community Relations Office (Champaign City Building, 102 N. Neil Street, Champaign).  The complaint must be fully completed, signed, and returned to the Community Relations Office.  If needed, the Community Relations Office staff can provide assistance in drafting and filing the complaint.

Investigation

After receiving a complaint, the City’s Community Relations Manager/Compliance Officer will lead the investigation.  The Community Relations Manager/Compliance Officer’s job is to collect and summarize the evidence from both the complainant and the respondent. The complainant will be asked to supply documents to support the allegation of discrimination.  The information collected will be used to determine if you were treated differently than other similarly situated individuals or groups who are not in a protected class.  Note: You may have other rights or causes of action which do not fall under the jurisdiction of Champaign’s Human Rights Ordinance.  If you feel you do, you should contact an attorney.

Mediation Settlement

At any time during an investigation, the Community Relations Manager/Compliance Officer can attempt to resolve the dispute through mediation.  Both parties must agree to the mediation process.  Mediation seeks a voluntary resolution of the dispute by the parties without deciding the merits of the case.  If the parties are unable to reach an agreement, the complaint will proceed through investigation and a public hearing if necessary.

Investigation Determination

A variety of fact-finding techniques may be used in the investigation of the complaint.  Generally, this includes reviewing documents submitted by both parties, as well as conducting interviews with the complainant, respondent’s personnel, and other witnesses.  At the conclusion of the investigation, the Community Relations Manager/Compliance Officer will make one of these two determinations:

  • No Probable Cause Determination
    If it is determined that there is insufficient evidence to support the allegations of the complaint, the Community Relations Manager/Compliance Officer will issue a No Probable Cause Ruling and dismiss the case.
  • Probable Cause Determination
    If it is determined that there is sufficient evidence to conclude that a violation of the City of Champaign’s Human Rights Ordinance occurred, the Community Relations Manager/Compliance Officer will negotiate with the respondent and attempt to reach a voluntary agreement to settle the complaint.

Public Hearing

If attempts to reach a settlement fail, the case is tried at a public hearing before the City of Champaign’s Human Relations Commission.

 

Rights and Responsibilities

Complainant’s Rights and Responsibilities

You Have a Right To:

  • Know the status of your case
  • Have written notice of any meeting of final action relating to your case
  • File and pursue a charge without being harassed, intimidated, or retaliated against
  • Obtain a full remedy, if discrimination is found

You Have a Responsibility To:

  • Provide and explain all relevant information and provide relevant data, papers, or evidence upon request
  • Respond to all inquiries from the Community Relations Office.  Your case may be dismissed if you fail to respond.  Inquiries will be as convenient and as infrequent as possible
  • Attend all meetings and fact-finding conferences when requested.  Your schedule will be accommodated, if possible
  • Follow your case by keeping in touch with our office and providing updated contact information when appropriate

Respondent’s Rights and Responsibilities

You Have a Right To:

  • Have a clear written statement of the charge
  • Know the status of the case and who is working on it
  • Have a written notice of any meeting of final action relative to the case

You Have a Responsibility To:

  • Provide a written answer to the complaint within the allotted time
  • Supply and explain all relevant information, data, papers, or evidence upon request
  • Respond to all inquiries from the Community Relations Office.  These will be as convenient and as infrequent as possible
  • Attend all meetings and fact-finding conferences when requested.  Your schedule will be accommodated, if possible