The Iowa City City Council has approved the creation of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
The commission was one of the primary demands by the Iowa Freedom Riders to improve on correcting systemic inequalities in the community.
The commission will be tasked with gathering evidence and testimony of racial injustice in Iowa City and hosting community discussions on racial inequality in the city, among other tasks.
The commission’s members will be appointed by the city council.
The vote to create the commission was 6-1, with councilor Mazahir Salih the lone dissenting vote. Salih said black voices like hers were not being heard when the resolution was being drafted, and the city didn’t take seriously recommended amendments from the Iowa Freedom Riders and other Black Lives Matter advocates. One such amendment called for the commission to run independently from the city council.
This was the fourth time the creation of the commission came before the council.