2/27/13

Phoenix Adds Transgender Protections Including Public Accommodations And Sexual Orientation To City Ordinance

Video: Following 'heated debate' Phoenix added sexual orientation and gender expression to non discrimination ordinances.

CBS 5 reports that the haters were out in numbers last night extending the city's meeting until the wee hours. Joe La Rue who's Scottsdale AZ group "Alliance Defending Freedom" which calls the ACLU a "Radical anti-Christian group" was present. He claimed the law would give "an open door to any sexual predator, not the transgender community, but any sexual predator that pretends to be transgender. That person can go into the women's restroom and this gives them easy access to women and, especially, children."

La Rue's effort to instill fear was unfounded as it was noted that Tuscon amended a similar law to include LGBT people in 1999 and according to city officials there have seen no instances of predators using the law as a pretext for preying on woman and children in restrooms.

Mayor Greg Stanton issued the following statement today on phoenix.gov after the passage of the updates to the city’s non-discrimination ordinance:

“This was the right thing to do for our city. With 165 other cities, including Tucson and Flagstaff, adopting similar ordinances, some more than a decade ago, Phoenix had some catching up to do. We as a city value all our citizens, and consider diversity as our strength. It’s good for business, it’s good for our economy, and it’s the right thing to do for Phoenix."

"Bishop Kirk Smith of the Episcopal Diocese of Arizona said he thinks calling the proposal the “bathroom bill” is a way to play on individuals’ fears. They remind him of the scare tactics that were used when it first became illegal to discriminate in housing based on race, he said."
According to the DowntownDevil many Local Phoenix business were present in support of the amendment "along with neighborhood groups including the Evans Churchill Neighborhood Association and the Downtown Voices Coalition, a downtown advocacy group." It wasn't a easy go for fair minded people present, in fact it was traumatic as noted by Kim Pearson a <>outspoken advocate of transgender children's rights on Facebook: "Good Night cruel world! By cruel world I specifically mean the horrible, hurtful people who were saying vile things about transgender children today in down town Phoenix. If your God thinks my son and I are sinners, I don't even want to imagine what your God must think of the things you say and do. Put a fork in me, I'm done!" I will borrow Kim's favorite saying now: For the Kids!







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