Civil rights director fired for inappropriate comments

Michigan Department of Civil Rights Director Agustin Arbulu

Michigan Department of Civil Rights Director Agustin Arbulu speaks in Grand Rapids on May 7, 2019.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Civil Rights Commission in Michigan has voted to fire the director of the state’s Department of Civil Rights after it emerged that he made inappropriate comments that objectified women.

The commission originally reprimanded Agustin Arbulu after an investigation into remarks he made to a male staffer during a listening session at a middle school in May.

On Tuesday, in a 5-2 vote, the commission dismissed Arbulu as director of the agency that investigates discrimination complaints.

Arbulu was appointed in 2013 to the commission by then-Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican. He has been director of the agency since 2015.

Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer earlier this month blasted the commission’s decision to let Arbulu keep his job despite his comments, which a staffer said included such things as “would you look at that woman” and that the staffer should “check out” her butt.

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