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This newsletter highlights events and programs offered through the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

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Missouri Human Rights Conference

Missouri Human Rights Conference

The Missouri Commission on Human Rights invites everyone to attend the 3rd Annual Missouri Human Rights Conference on Friday, Dec. 5, 2014, in Jefferson City. The conference begins at 10 a.m. at the Harry S. Truman State Office Building and features topics including:

  • 60th Anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education
  • 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
  • MCHR Complaint and Public Hearing Processes
  • Addressing Barriers to Equal Opportunity
  • Fair Housing

This year’s keynote address will be delivered by Frederick Douglass, as portrayed by actor Charles Everett Pace. Other special guests include speakers from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, U.S. Department of Justice, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The conference is free and open to the public and online registration is now available.

Continuing legal education credits will also be available. You can view a recap of last year’s Missouri Human Rights Conference here.

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'Tis the Season for Hiring

Seasonal Hiring

With the holiday season quickly approaching, now is the time to start applying for seasonal positions. A variety of businesses are looking to hire some additional employees to help during the holidays.

Some jobs that pick up during the holiday season include work in retail, service, delivery, warehouses, restaurants, and tax preparing.

Seasonal Jobs

Although many of these positions are usually temporary, it is possible for part-time positions to be offered as permanent positions after the holiday season is over.

Be sure to visit your local Missouri Career Center and jobs.mo.gov to find the latest job postings in the Show-Me State. You can also check the Division of Workforce Development’s calendar to find career fairs and workshops in your area.

Even though you will be earning wages from seasonal work, you may still be eligible to receive partial unemployment benefits if you work less than full time. To remain eligible for benefits, you must continue to look for and be able to work full time. When filing a claim, be sure to report your gross wages the week they are earned, not the week they are paid. To learn more about partial unemployment benefits, click here.

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MCHR Diversity Spotlight - Native American Heritage Month

Native American Heritage Month

In 1976, Congress, in conjunction with President Gerald Ford, designated one week each year in October as Native American Awareness Week, a tradition that continued until August 1990, when President George H.W. Bush approved the transition to National American Indian Heritage Month, celebrating the accomplishments, contributions, and sacrifices of American Indians and Alaskan Natives each November. Each year, a similar proclamation is issued, and in 2009, President Barack Obama signed legislation renaming November as National Native American Heritage Month. In addition, President Obama signed into law the Native American Heritage Day Act of 2009, designating the Friday immediately following Thanksgiving Day of each year as Native American Heritage Day.

The month-long celebration recognizes hundreds of different tribes and approximately 250 languages. Missourians pay tribute to the rich ancestry and traditions of our Native Americans; the original inhabitants of our state were peoples from several tribes, including Chickasaw, Illini, Ioway, Missouri, Osage, Otoe, and Quapaw. Missouri’s Native American roots are centuries old and remain a significant part of our state’s unique identity. Discover the story of early Native Americans in our area, even before Missouri became a state in 1821, through objects, including stone tools, arrowheads, beadwork, and clothing, on display in the Missouri State Museum on the first floor of the State Capitol. Admission is free. For more information, call 573-751-4127.

Today, more than 72,000 Missourians identify their race, either entirely or in part, as American Indian/Alaska Native. One way to respect our history is to prevent others from discriminating against Missourians who belong to the Native American community. The Missouri Human Rights Act (MHRA) protects all Missourians from adverse treatment because of their race or ancestry, and the Missouri Commission on Human Rights (MCHR), a state agency, enforces the MHRA by investigating complaints made by persons who believe they have been discriminated against in employment, housing, or places of public accommodation. If you suspect you have been discriminated against due to your race or other protected category, contact MCHR at 877-781-4236 or take this assessment to determine if the MHRA applies to your situation.

Celebrate Native American Heritage Month by exploring these sites, activities, and events across our state:

Western Missouri

  • Were your ancestors Native American? Research your family tree at the National Archives, Central Plains Region in Kansas City, 400 West Pershing Road, which houses various records from twelve tribes, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, census rolls, land allotment files, and more. For hours and questions, call 816-268-8000 or e-mail kansascity.archives@nara.gov.
  • Don’t miss The Plains Indians: Artists of Earth and Sky exhibition at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, 4525 Oak St., Kansas City, open during regular museum hours through Jan. 11, 2015. Tipis on the south lawn beckon visitors to explore the outdoors or join a guided tour for a more interactive experience. While there, check out the three galleries encompassing the American Indian Art Collection, including pottery, basketry, quill and beadwork, sculpture, and more. Two of the featured attractions are a group of classic Navajo and Pueblo textiles and a selection of Rio Grande Pueblo pots. The gallery suite is among the largest devoted to Native peoples of North America in any comprehensive art museum in the world. For more information, call 816-751-1278.
  • The Kansas City Indian Center, 600 West 39th St., holds Culture Night the first Wednesday of every month. Join the free Nov. 5 festivities featuring a potluck and family-friendly fun. Call 816-421-7608 or e-mail information@kcindiancenter.org for details.
  • Osage Indians were the first to discover a cavern they called “The Devil’s Den,” which, hundreds of years later, is one of the state’s most visited underground attractions. Marvel Cave, one of the largest subterranean entry rooms in the United States, is the start to the cave’s hour-long tours, which depart every half-hour from 399 Silver Dollar City Parkway, Branson. For details, call 800-831-4386.
  • Imagine 18th century Osage village life in what is now a peaceful hilltop spot that once was the home of nearly 3,000 Native peoples and about 200 lodges. Osage Village State Historic Site, located in Walker, features a trail and outdoor exhibits that help visitors visualize the former community. Print a site map and suggested walking tour to enhance your time at this state park. Call 417-682-2279 for details.

Central Missouri

Eastern Missouri

  • St. Charles Community College, 4601 Mid Rivers Mall Drive, Cottleville, will host events to celebrate Native American Heritage Month. “The Real Story of the First Thanksgiving” will be held on Nov. 20 at 11 a.m. at SC Scooter’s Place. For a $5 donation or five canned goods, participants can enjoy an authentic lunch with recipes from the days of the pilgrims and learn what really happened at the first Thanksgiving. For more information, contact Kelley Pfeiffer at 636-922-8544 or kpfeiffer@stchas.edu.
  • The St. Louis Public Library presents an American Indian Heritage Month celebration for grades K-5, on Nov. 4 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at the Divoll Branch Library, 4234 North Grand Blvd., St. Louis. Call 314-534-0313 for details.
  • Missouri State Parks preserve sites of historic importance related to Native American cultures, including Towosahgy State Historic Site in East Prairie, where visitors can view earthen mounds built by Mississippian peoples living in Missouri between 1000 and 1400 A.D., and Trail of Tears State Park, in Jackson, where, in 1838 and 1839, thousands of Cherokee peoples crossed the Mississippi River in a forced migration from their native lands to the then newly-created Indian Territory, now Oklahoma.
  • Visit the only Illinois Indian Village site discovered in Missouri at Iliniwek Village State Historic Site. Visitors can pack a picnic and hike the short walking trial complete with an excavated Indian longhouse. Call 660-877-3871 for additional information.

Statewide

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