UPDATE: Sioux Falls City Council approves anti-hate resolution
UPDATE: The Falls City Council has passed an anti-hate resolution.
Mayor Paul TenHaken brought the resolution to the council after several reported incidents of racism around the city.
The council unanimously approved the resolution in its Tuesday night meeting.
The City of Sioux Falls is putting its foot down when it comes to hate. There's a newly proposed anti-hate resolution city council will be taking up tonight.
Three months ago, a group of Sioux Falls citizens shared their concerns with city officials about what they believed to be hate happening in their neighborhood.
Citizens in McKennan Park are concerned about KKK flyers they found in their neighborhood. So, Taneeza Islam and her organization South Dakota Voices for Justice brought them to city council.
Concerned neighbors shared their own experiences they've had with hate.
"We had a Jewish member of the community speak about what it means to see a swastika in our community. We had residents show the KKK flyers,” said Islam.
Julian Beaudion has also spoken up against hate as he's experienced discrimination.
"Being a black man in America and growing up in the south, I've experienced racism on a daily basis," said Beaudion.
It was after hearing stories like these that the Human Relations Commission decided to craft an anti-hate resolution. Its goal is to show that the city of Sioux Falls is taking a strong stance against hate, bias, and discrimination. Also, that hate groups like the KKK are not welcome in the city.
"Historically it stands for hate, historically it stands for racism, stands for violence and it stands for murder,” said Alex Ramirez, Chair of Human Relations Commission.
This resolution also reminds folks of ways they can report discrimination they may encounter. The city's hope is that the resolution will help keep hate from escalating.
"We have seen a lot of hate, but we haven't seen a whole lot of crime yet and we don't want to get to that point and so I am also working with them to set up some classes and some events that will sort of inform people on what to do and how to fight against it,” said Ramirez.
Anti-hate advocates say this is just the start of making a change in Sioux Falls.
If City councilors adopt this anti-hate resolution Tuesday, January 14th, the Human Relations Commission will have the power to investigate some of these acts of hate like the KKK flyers and figure out where they are coming from.