Lincoln City Council Passes LGBT Workplace Fairness Ordinance

By: Catherine Crane Email
By: Catherine Crane Email

At Monday's meeting, the Lincoln City Council voted 5 to 0 to adopt the Fairness Ordinance which added gay and transgender people to the list of individuals with workplace discrimination protection.

It was a long awaited day for many, but the Lincoln City council voted to pass the fairness ordinance.

"It's going to allow people to have the confidence that they're going to be judged based on their qualifications, not their sexual orientation," said Tyler Rachard, President of Outlink.

Seven hours of testimony from about 100 people helped lead to this moment. Councilman Carl Eskridge introduced the ordinance.

"The bottom line of it is that prejudice and discrimination are never right in this community for any reason," said Councilman Eskridge.

But both Councilmen Adam Hornung and Jon Camp abstained from the vote citing legal reasons.

"When it comes to enforcement and interpretation of the state constitution some opinions matter more than others. The Attorney General has issued an opinion stating that action by this body on this measure would be in violation of state law."

They'd rather see the matter put to a vote of the people.

"I've heard, 'it's seven people making the decision for everybody,' that's why they call this a representative form of government," said Councilmen Doug Emery. "When you say things like 'I don't get to vote,' you did get to vote. You went to the ballot box and you elected seven people. If you don't like what they do, you have an opportunity to vote and change that."

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