Shortly after the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples can marry nationwide, members of For Fayetteville, the anti-discrimination ordinance support committee, reacted with a press release with open arms and a reality check for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
“Today is a historic day for gay rights, but we still have a ways to go,” said Danielle Weatherby, spokesperson and For Fayetteville legal expert, according to the press release. “In Fayetteville, those in the LGBT community still face discrimination and don’t have the protections we all enjoy.”
For that reason, members of For Fayetteville have worked hard to pass the Uniform Civil Rights Protection Ordinance, according to the press release.
“I couldn’t be more elated in the Supreme Court’s ruling, but I agree with Danielle,” said Kyle Smith, For Fayetteville executive committee member, according to the press release.
After voters repealed Fayetteville’s last anti-discrimination ordinance, Ordinance 119, in December, a committee including City Attorney Kit Williams, city council member Adella Gray and others, revised the ordinance to make a new one. At a city council meeting June 16, supporters said they felt confident the ordinance addressed all the aspects people had issues with last time.
“This new ordinance is not a cookie-cutter ordinance from the national gay lobby,” Smith said according to the release. “It’s really a local effort that respects our communities of faith and the business community in Fayetteville.”
The new ordinance prohibits businesses from discrimination against people based on race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, political opinions or affiliation according to the ordinance. It differs from Ordinance 119 because it creates a civil rights commision and exempts religious establishments such as churches or religious schools.
“I look forward to continuing our community’s discussion on LGBT equality as we work to pass this ordinance on Sept. 8,” Smith said, according to the press release.