How the city of Charlotte describes the proposed changes:
▪ Would have added marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression to list of protected characteristics in the commercial nondiscrimination and passenger vehicle for hire ordinance.
▪ Would have added those same five new categories to list of protected characteristics that the Community Relations Committee is authorized to make recommendations for legislation or other actions to eliminate or reduce discrimination and to approve or disapprove plans to eliminate discrimination through the conciliation process.
▪ Would have changed the public accommodation ordinance to add “sex” and the five new characteristics to the general prohibition of discrimination and deletes the current separate section dealing with discrimination based on sex in restaurants, hotels and motels.
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How did this proposal happen?
The city of Charlotte describes the background of the ordinance:
▪ On Nov. 24, Scott Bishop of the Human Rights Campaign gave a presentation to City Council in which he proposed adding marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender expression and gender identity to the list of protected characteristics in several of the city’s nondiscrimination ordinances.
▪ In response to Bishop’s request, City Council asked City Manager Ron Carlee and the city attorney to draft information on the proposed ordinance changes.
▪ On Feb. 9, Hagemann provided a history of protected characteristics under federal, state and local law, and he outlined the city’s current nondiscrimination ordinances. He also presented a proposed ordinance.
▪ City Council voted 7-4 (Michael Barnes, Ed Driggs, Greg Phipps and Kenny Smith voted no) to put the changes on the agenda.