Indianapolis - By a bipartisan vote, the Council voted to pass the Human Rights Ordinance. Council President Steve Talley announced his support for the proposal several weeks ago after talking with constituents, community leaders, attending informal meetings on the issue and considering its fiscal impact on an already tight budget.
"The proposal we passed tonight clarifies and defines the basic protections and rights guaranteed to every citizen of Marion County. And, it brings our code into compliance with the federal and state Americans with Disabilities Act, it also extends protection to all United States veterans," said President Talley.
President Tally said, "As a matter of human relations and consciousness, the amendments are justified. As a matter of prudence when spending taxpayers’ dollars, there is no budgetary downside. I realized that the problem of discrimination is a constant issue that we all must guard against and if left unattended would be a hindrance to the continued growth and vitality of our modern and expanding community. "
Key measures of the ordinance includes:
· Expanding equal protection to all veterans who fight to protect this country;
· Updating the local code to support the federal and state Americans with Disabilities Act provisions;
· Updating and expanding anti-discrimination laws in housing to be concurrent with the Indiana Civil Rights Act and including gender identity and sexual orientation in those provisions;
· Updating and expanding anti-discrimination laws in employment to be concurrent with the Indiana Fair Housing Law and including gender identity and sexual orientation in those provisions, and;
· Decreasing the size of the Equal Opportunity Advisory Board.
President Talley said, "discrimination against any group in our community is a threat to the rights we all enjoy. If we really want our community to grow and prosper then we must send a clear message that equal protection will be guarded in Marion County." He added, "Our job as Councillors is to protect the rights of every citizen in Marion County, passage of this proposal sends a clear message that we are serious about accomplishing that job."
Indianapolis, as we know it, is a dynamic and vital community that attracts businesses and people because of its unique location and nurturing environment. This city is a great place to live and raise a family. That comfort should be enjoyed by all who call this city home.
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