Lately, I’ve been hearing a lot of complaints about the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities from both attorneys and clients. And I’ve come to one conclusion:
The CHRO Complaint Procedure needs a reboot.
Now, before you dismiss this as a critical column – let’s be clear. I like many reboots. Sure, the Superman Returns movie paled in comparison to the Christopher Reeve version, but I thought the new Star Trek reboot was pretty snazzy.
Why do movies go through reboots? Because the formula that had worked for the movie series for so long has just stopped working.
And right now, the process that the CHRO has created is just not working. It’s not working for individuals, it’s not working for companies and, I believe, it’s not really working well for the agency itself. (And note too that I’m not suggesting the agency itself needs a reboot — though some have argued for that — rather, it’s the process as mandated by the law that this post is addressing.)
A reboot doesn’t mean failure; it doesn’t mean to throw out the entire formula. The agency has made some good strides on public outreach, for example, under the new leadership team. It is closing cases at a good clip and the mediation process seems better than in years past with dedicated staff just for mediations.
And I wouldn’t go so far as to say we live in a post-modern age where it has completely outlived its usefulness.
But the complaint procedure which was reworked a few years ago just isn’t working for anyone. Here’s why: